Sunday, July 20, 2008

Jo Stafford Dies at 90

July 19 (Bloomberg) -- Jo Stafford, who sang backup for Frank Sinatra and performed with Tommy Dorsey, died July 16 at her Century City, California, home, the New York Times reported. She was 90.

The biggest hit for Stafford, a singer in the Pied Pipers and then a soloist, was ``You Belong to Me'' in 1952, which sold 2 million copies, the newspaper said. Her death, caused by congestive heart failure, was confirmed by her son, Tim Weston, the newspaper said.

A performer from the late 1930s until the mid-1950s, Stafford started singing with her older sisters in a country- western group called the Stafford Sisters, then joined seven men as the Pied Pipers, the newspaper said. The octet was cut to a quartet and joined the Tommy Dorsey band, and became backup singers for Frank Sinatra, the newspaper said.

While recording with Capitol Records, Stafford toured with the U.S.O. in 1944 and 1945, earning her the ``G.I. Jo'' nickname from servicemen, the newspaper said. She is survived by her younger sister, a son and daughter, and four grandchildren, the Times said.

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