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Singer Jane Harvey Dies at 88

Recorded with Ellington, Goodman, others

Jane Harvey

Vocalist Jane Harvey, who sang with Duke Ellington and Bing Crosby during her 70-year career, died Aug. 15 at her Los Angeles home. She was 88, and the cause was stomach cancer.

Born Phyllis Taff on Jan. 6, 1925 in Jersey City, N.J., Harvey began her career singing in Manhattan’s Café Society nightclub. She recorded “Close as Pages in a Book” with Goodman in 1944, then joined Desi Arnaz’s orchestra in 1946, also recording with that band. She joined a European USO tour with Bob Hope in 1948, sang in the Broadway musical Bless You All in 1950, then joined Ellington in the late ’50s.

Harvey recorded her first album, Leave It to Jane, produced by then-husband Bob Thiele, in 1959, then left the music business to raise a son. (She remarried and divorced several times.) She eventually moved to Los Angeles and released several albums under her own name beginning in the 1980s, while also performing in New York and elsewhere.

Originally Published