Birthday: February 29, 1916
Died At Age: 77
Sun Sign: Pisces
Also Known As: Fannye Rose Shore
Born in: Winchester, Tennessee
Famous as: Singer
Spouse/Ex-: George Montgomery (m. 1943–1963), Maurice F. Smith (m. 1963–1964)
father: Solomon Shore
mother: Anna Stein Shore
children: John David Montgomery, Melissa Montgomery-Hime
Died on: February 24, 1994
place of death: Beverly Hills, California
U.S. State: Tennessee
Cause of Death: Cancer
Dinah Shore, born as Fannye Rose Shore, was an American singer, television personality, and actress. She was the top-rated female American singer of the 1940s and rose to fame as a musician during the Big Band era. She then gained even greater success in films and television a decade later. During her singing career, she contributed to several songs as a lead vocalist. These included "I Thought About You", "The Breeze and I", "Yes, My Darling Daughter", "I Don't Want to Walk Without You", "Body and Soul", "Someone to Watch Over Me", "The Best Things In Life Are Free", "A Wonderful Guy", "It's All In the Game" and "Fascination", to name a few. She recorded numerous albums like ‘Musical Orchids’, ‘The Blue Velvet Voice of Dinah Shore’, ‘The King and I’, ‘Holding Hands at Midnight’, ‘Dinah, Yes Indeed’ and ‘Dinah Sings Some Blues with Red’. As an actress, Shore acted in the movies 'Thank Your Lucky Stars', 'Till the Clouds Roll By', 'Aaron Slick from Punkin Crick', 'Belle of the Yukon,' and 'Up in Arms'. In addition, she enjoyed a four-decade long career in television, starring in her own variety and music shows and even hosting a number of talk shows. On a personal note, Shore married twice in her lifetime. She loved golf and was an avid supporter of women's professional golf.
Childhood & Early Life
Dinah Shore was born as Fannye Rose Shore on February 29, 1916 in Winchester, Tennessee, USA, to Solomon and Anna Shore. At the age of two, she was diagnosed with polio. After intensive care and following a course of rigorous exercises, she recovered. However, she sustained a deformed foot.
In 1924, her family moved to McMinnville, Tennessee. By the time she was in the fifth grade, the Shore family had moved to Nashville, where Fannye studied at the Nashville's Hume-Fogg High School. There she was a cheerleader and was also involved in a number of other activities.
At the age of 16, Fannye lost her mother. Later, she attended Vanderbilt University and graduated from there in 1938 with a degree in sociology.
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Fannye made her radio debut on WSM (AM) radio station in the late 1930s. She then moved to New York City with the dream of becoming a singer. In many of her auditions, she performed the song "Dinah". It was during this time that she acquired “Dinah” as her stage name.
In February 1940, she served as a featured vocalist on a radio program titled ‘The Chamber Music Society of Lower Basin Street’. The same year, her singing captured the attention of Eddie Cantor and the latter signed her for his radio show, ‘Time to Smile.’ Soon after this, she signed a contract with RCA Victor Records and recorded the song "Yes, My Darling Daughter" which became a major hit.
After this, Shore started her own radio show called ‘Call to Music’. In 1943, she appeared in her first film ‘Thank Your Lucky Stars’.
She then went on to appear in another radio show called ‘Paul Whiteman Presents’. Then the American singer released the singles “Blues In the Night", "I'll Walk Alone", "You'd Be So Nice To Come Home To" and "Jim", all of which were successful.
Shore continued doing radio shows throughout the 1940s. In 1946, she got signed to Columbia Records and went on to release the song, "Shoo Fly Pie And Apple Pan Dowdy”. During the 1940s, she also did a number of movies, such as ‘Follow the Boys’, ‘Up in Arms’, ‘Till the Clouds Roll By’ and ‘Belle of the Yukon’.
In 1950, the American artiste returned to RCA Victor and released hits like "Sweet Violets" and "My Heart Cries for You". During the 1950s, she also recorded several hit duets including "A Penny a Kiss" and "Blue Canary" as well as hit covers including “If I Give My Heart to You" and "Changing Partners".
Shore recorded with RCA Victor until 1958. During this time, she recorded many albums like ‘Bouquet of Blues’, ‘Moments Like These ‘, ‘Holding Hands at Midnight’, ‘Vivacious’ and ‘Once in a While’.
In 1959, Shore left RCA Victor and went on to work with Capitol Records. She recorded the theme albums ‘Dinah, Yes Indeed’, ‘Somebody Loves Me’, ‘Dinah Sings, Previn Plays’ and ‘Dinah Sings Some Blues With Red’.
After working on the albums ‘The Fabulous Hits’ and ‘Dinah, Down Home’, she was dropped by Capitol in 1962 after which she recorded only a handful of albums. These included ‘Lower Basin Street Revisited’, ‘Songs for Sometime Losers’ and ‘Dinah!’ Shore’s final studio album was ‘Dinah! Visits Sesame Street’ which was released in 1979.
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Soon after Dinah Shore arrived in New York in 1937, she made her first ever television appearances on broadcasts for NBC’s W2XBS. Then in 1949, she made her first commercial television appearance on ‘Ed Wynn’ show. Two years later, she began her own TV show titled ‘The Dinah Shore Show’.
She started hosting ‘The Chevy Show’ series’ in 1956. Then she hosted the show’s second season titled ‘The Dinah Shore Chevy Show’.
In April 1976, she appeared on the comedy program ‘Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman’. The same year, she hosted ‘Dinah and her New Best Friends’. Next, she guest-starred in the show ‘Pee-wee's Playhouse Christmas Special’. The American beauty then ended her TV career by hosting ‘A Conversation with Dinah’, a TNN show that ran from 1989 to 1992.
During the 1940s, Dinah Shore recorded several hits, such as "The Gypsy", "Laughing on the Outside”, "The Anniversary Song”, "Doin' What Comes Naturally", "I Wish I Didn't Love You So" and "Dear Hearts and Gentle People" with Columbia Records. The success of these songs made her a singing superstar.
She lent her voice to two Disney movies: ‘Make Mine Music’ and ‘Fun and Fancy Free’. During the 1950s, she recorded the hit songs "Whatever Lola Wants" and "Love and Marriage” with RCA Victor. In the later years of her career, Dinah Shore hosted two shows, ‘Dinah's Place’ and ‘Dinah’ (later renamed to ‘Dinah and Friends’).
Awards & Achievements
Dinah Shore won several awards in her lifetime including nine Emmys, a Golden Globe, and a Peabody Award.
She was honored with the Banff Television Festival Award of Excellence in 1984.
In acknowledgment of her contributions to golf, the Golf Course Superintendents Association of America awarded her with the Old Tom Morris Award in 1993.
In 1991, Dinah Shore was inducted into the Television Hall of Fame.
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In 1994, she was elected an honorary member of the LPGA Hall of Fame.
In her early days in the show business, Dinah Shore was involved with several artistes like drummer Gene Krupa and actor James Stewart.
From 1943 to 1962, Shore was married to George Montgomery. The couple had a daughter named Melissa Ann as well as an adopted son named John David "Jody" Montgomery.
After her divorce from Montgomery, the American beauty married Maurice Smith. The marriage was short-lived. She was later involved with singer Eddie Fisher, actor Rod Taylor, comedian Dick Martin and actor Burt Reynolds.
In the year 1993, Dinah Shore was diagnosed with ovarian cancer and died of complications from the disease the following year, on February 24, 1994.
Her daughter, Melissa Montgomery, owns the rights to most of Shore's TV series.
In both Rancho Mirage and Cathedral City, California, streets are named after the late American artiste.
The Club Skirts Dinah Shore Weekend, a lesbian community’s weekend getaway and music festival, is named after her.