vocalist who began singing professionally when she was eighteen years old,
recording commercial jingles for clients such as Oldsmobile, State Farm,
and Wrigley’s chewing gum.
By the time she was twenty-two years of age, she was already a
In 1966, the
pitchwoman with perfect pitch scored a hit in the U.K. with “Hush
Don’t Cry”, backed with a cover of The Beatles’
“Here, There and Everywhere”.
joined The Singers Unlimited, famously singing all the women’s parts
in the otherwise all-male quartet.
Gene Puerling’s penchant for
overdubs meant that sometimes she would record up to thirty voice tracks on
one song. It did not hurt that
she was equally adept at singing alto and soprano.
turned out fifteen albums in about ten years, leaving her little time to
moonlight, but moonlight she did on LPs such as Moods and Grooves with the Ju-Par
Universal Orchestra and Bruised
Orange by John Prine. In 1979, she recorded with Steve
Goodman on High and Outside, Ken Nordine on Stare
with Your Ears, and Eberhard Weber on Fluid Rustle. She appeared on A Tribute to Steve Goodman in 1986 and Goodman’s
posthumous release, Unfinished
Business, in 1987. In 1988,
she collaborated with Fred Simon on Usually/Always. She reunited with Simon on
1991’s Open Book.
Bonnie, along with the rest of The Singers Unlimited, backed Gloria Estefan
on the Yuletide album, Christmas
Through Your Eyes. She
closed out the decade with Bobby Lewis on Just Havin’ Some Fun and In the Forefront.
In the new
millennium, she did a pair of Windham Hill albums, Peace of Mind and Windham
Hill Chill: Ambient Acoustic. She was also a member of the choir
on Mavis Staples’ 2004 effort, Have
a Little Faith.
For a generous
sampling of Bonnie’s voice, check out The
Singers Unlimited boxed set, Magic
The Oscar Peterson Trio and The Singers
Sesame Street (Bruce Hart/Joe Raposo/Jon
The Singers Unlimited recordings
Michelle (John Lennon/Paul McCartney)