Nat "King" Cole (March 17, 1919 - February 15, 1965) was a celebrated and influential jazz/traditional pop singer and pianist with a clear, velvety baritone and an elegant, laid-back style who became famous beginning in the early 1940s. His numerous signature songs include such pop standards as "(I Love You) For Sentimental Reasons" (1946), "Mona Lisa" (1950), "Too Young" (1951), "Unforgettable" (1951), "A Blossom Fell" (1955), "Ramblin' Rose" (1962), and "Those Lazy-Hazy-Crazy Days Of Summer" (1963). The beloved crooner has also been immortalized by his rendition of "The Christmas Song (Merry Christmas To You)," a perennial favorite since it first charted in 1946.
Born Nathaniel Adams Coles in Montgomery, Alabama, he launched his career in the late 1930s as a jazz pianist with his group, The King Cole Trio, before eventually going solo in 1950. From 1956-1957, he hosted his own TV variety show on NBC and also appeared and performed in numerous movies over his long career. In addition to his huge success as a jazz/pop singer, he is also widely considered to be a key figure in jazz piano. Nat "King" Cole was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 2000, and his numerous other honors and accolades include a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame (1960), a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award (1990), and being inducted into the National Rhythm & Blues Hall of Fame (2020). In 2022, his 1961 re-recording of "The Christmas Song" was selected by the Library of Congress for preservation in the United States National Recording Registry.
- The New York Times remembers Nat King Cole.
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Nat King Cole performs "Walking My Baby Back Home" on The Ed Sullivan Show (October 23, 1955).
Available on the following DVD: The Very Best of The Ed Sullivan Show Vol. 2
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Nat 'King' Cole
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