1956 Eddie Fisher – Cindy, Oh Cindy
Eddie Fisher was one of the most successful high school dropouts. He grew up in Philadelphia and exhibited a talent for singing at an early age. He sang on local radio shows while still in school and dropped out in the middle of his senior year to pursue a career in music.
Eddie sang on both the radio and television version of Arthur Godfrey’s Talent Scouts. After appearing on Eddie Cantor’s radio show, he signed with RCA Victor Records in 1949. He had a top ten single in 1950 with his recording of Thinking of You.
The army drafted Eddie in 1951 and sent him to Korea for a year. After that, they returned him to the states, and he became the official soloist for The United States Army Band.
After leaving the military, Eddie began singing in clubs and returned to recording singles.
He married Debbie Reynolds in 1955 and in 1956 the pair co-starred in the film Bundle of Joy. By then, Eddie had released 23 top ten singles, four of which topped the Hot 100. He and Debbie also had their first child that year: Carrie Fisher. Yes, -that- Carrie Fisher.
Folk music had become very popular in the fifties. Robert Nemiroff and Burt D’Lugoff took the melody from the song Pay Me My Money Down and wrote new lyrics. The result was the song Cindy, Oh Cindy. Vince Martin and the Tarriers recorded the song in 1956 and released it as a single.
Eddie quickly covered the song and released his own single, which was not exactly folk music.
Vince Martin and the Tarriers reached #9 on the Hot 100 in 1956 while Eddie’s version made it up to #10. I don’t recall Vince’s version at all, but could easily sing along with Eddie’s single.
Eddie’s friend Mike Todd died in a plane crash in 1958. Eddie began an affair with Mike’s former wife, Elizabeth Taylor. That led to his divorce and losing his recording contract, his television show, and most of his fans. On the plus side, he and Liz got married in 1959.
Cindy, Oh Cindy turned out to be his last top forty single on the Hot 100.
He struggled for years to restart his career. Eddie had a half-dozen singles reach the top forty on the Adult Contemporary chart between 1965 and 1967 that helped keep his career alive. Even that chart abandoned Eddie’s music, but he continued performing publicly until his death in 2010.
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