Bea Wain

Born

  • April 30, 1917
  • New York, NY

Marriages / Children

  • André Baruch (1937/8)
  • Wayne
  • one daughter

Bea Wain

Singer Bea Wain is considered by many to be the best vocalist of her era. During the mid-1930s Wain sang with bandleader Gene Kardos. She also appeared on NBC's Children's Hour and as a member of Ted Straeter's Choir as well as with her own Bea and the Bachelors. The Bachelors consisted of Al Rinker, Ken Lane, and John Smedberg. The quartet performed on Fred Waring's radio program as part of the vocal group V-8, a combined effort with the Modernaires, before joining Kay Thompson in 1937, where they formed part of Thompson's Rhythm Singers. Later that same year, while she and the Bachelors were working on Kate Smith's radio show, bandleader Larry Clinton offered Wain a job in his newly-formed orchestra based solely on the strength of an eight-bar solo he had heard her sing on Thompson's radio program. She accepted and quickly emerged as the band's star attraction, singing on their biggest hits.

Wain stayed with Clinton only a year-and-a-half before deciding to go solo in early 1939. She recorded several titles under her own name and received much critical acclaim, though she only managed to chart one song. The recording ban of 1942 marked the end of her commercial recording career. She continued to sing, perform, and appear on radio, however, throughout the 1940s. She later moved to Florida, where she worked as a disc jockey alongside her husband, radio announcer André Baruch. The couple eventually settled in Beverly Hills during the late 1970s.

Wain also recorded ''If It's the Last Thing I Do'' with Artie Shaw in 1937, on which she was credited as Beatrice Wayne. This has led many sources to incorrectly cite Wayne as her real last name. She has indicated in an interview that Wain is the correct spelling.