Friday, 20 May 2011

Kathy Kirby

Kathy Kirby, born as Kathleen O'Rourke (October 20 1938 - May 19 2011) was an English singer.

At very young age, Kathy took singing lessons. After meeting bandleader Bert Ambrose in 1956 Kathy became a singer in his band. Until his death in 1971 Bert was Kathy's manager.

In 1959 Kathy started her solo career. She adopted the look of a blonde bombshell and was compared to Marilyn Monroe. Her looks and her powerful voice became her trademarks.

Kirby became one of the biggest stars of the mid 1960s, appearing in the Royal Command Variety Performance and three television series for BBC TV. In 1965 Kathy was chosen to represent the UK at the ESC. In the UK national final Kathy sang 6 songs of which I Belong won. At the ESC in Naples, Kathy came 2nd.

Kirby's star faded in the late 1960s. She recorded twelve singles and an album between 1967 and 1973, but they all failed to chart. She continued to make television appearances.

In December 1983, she retired from show business but she made occasional television appearances.

Kirby died on 19 May 2011 after a short illness.

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