LaVern Baker

LaVern Baker

About LaVern Baker

LaVern Baker (November 11, 1929 - March 10, 1997) was an American rhythm and blues singer, who had several hit records on the pop chart in the 1950s and early 1960s. Her most successful records were 'Tweedlee Dee' (1955), 'Jim Dandy' (1956), and 'I Cried a Tear' (1958). She was born Delores LaVern Baker in Chicago, Illinois. She is occasionally referred to as Delores Williams because of an early marriage to Eugene Williams; in the late 1940s he was identified in RCA Victor record company files as 'D. L. McMurley.' She was the niece of blues singer Merline Johnson and was also related to Memphis Minnie. She began singing in Chicago clubs such as the Club DeLisa around 1946, often billed as Little Miss Sharecropper, and first recorded under that name in 1949. She changed her name briefly to Bea Baker when recording for Okeh Records in 1951, and then became LaVern Baker when singing with Todd Rhodes and his band in 1952.

Contributions by Ghmyrtle, Derek R Bullamore, and RLCampbell.