Nathaniel Adams Coles (March 17, 1919 - February 15, 1965), known professionally as Nat King Cole, was an American musician who first came to prominence as a leading jazz pianist. He owes most of his popular musical fame to his soft baritone voice, which he used to perform in big band and jazz genres. He was one of the first black Americans to host a television variety show, and has maintained worldwide popularity since his death. Nathaniel Adams Coles was born in Montgomery, Alabama, on March 17, 1919. When he was 4, he and his family moved to Chicago, Illinois, where his father, Edward Coles, became a Baptist minister. Cole learned to play the organ from his mother, Perlina Coles, the church organist. His first performance was of 'Yes! We Have No Bananas' at age four. He began formal lessons at 12, eventually learning not only jazz and gospel music, but also European classical music, performing, as he said, 'from Johann Sebastian Bach to Sergei Rachmaninoff'.
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