R.I.P. - Yma Sumac

Damn! An amazing singer with a 4.5 octave vocal range. The LA Times has a good obit:

Yma Sumac, 'Peruvian songbird' with multi-octave range, dies at 86
The singer with a persona matching her exotic voice became an international sensation in the 1950s.

Yma Sumac, the Peruvian-born singer whose spectacular multi-octave vocal range and exotic persona made her an international sensation in the 1950s, has died. She was 86.

Sumac, who was diagnosed with colon cancer in February, died Saturday in an assisted-living facility in Silver Lake, said Damon Devine, her personal assistant and close friend.

Bursting onto the U.S. music scene after signing with Capitol Records in 1950, the raven-haired Sumac was known as the "Nightingale of the Andes," the "Peruvian Songbird" and a "singing marvel" with a 4 1/2 -octave (she said five-octave) voice.

"She is five singers in one," boasted her then-husband Moises Vivanco, a composer-arranger, in a 1951 interview with the Associated Press. "Never in 2,000 years has there been another voice like hers."

For a taste of her singing, visit her own website -- a music clip will autoplay. More clips here.

Truly one of a kind -- she had not performed for quite some time but she left an amazing body of work and will be missed.

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This page contains a single entry by DaveH published on November 2, 2008 10:27 PM.

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