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Two More Peggy Lee Albums Reissued

Peggy Lee
Peggy Lee

In a statement at once both apocryphal and prophetic, Colonel Tom Parker was said to have proclaimed that for Elvis, “Death will be his greatest career move.” For many jazz artists, even those lacking the King’s mythic stature, their careers after their passing have likewise been accelerated, in part because of the reissue phenomenon and in part because their estates have decided to open the vaults (no pun intended) to fulfill pent up demand for artists for whom new work consists entirely of old work.

I have no particular insight into the inner workings of Peggy Lee’s estate, but in the last 5 years we have seen a fair number of releases from the gifted and popular singer, who died in 2002. Lee, who was a major star in her lifetime, cultivated a rabid fan base even during her retirement. Her influence on modern singers is unmistakable and her platinum blonde with birthmark visage has become an iconic image cultivated by a succession of pop stars and celebrities. Lee begets Monroe begets Madonna begets Stefani begets an ambitious young woman somewhere out there ready for transformation.

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