Om Maxine Sullivan
Maxine Sullivan was a sophisticated yet no-nonsense jazz singer who instantly got to the heart of a song. Like her peers Ella Fitzgerald and Carmen McRae, Sullivan didn't sound stereotypically "black" or bluesy, and she scored a major hit during the Swing era with "Loch Lomand," a Scottish folk song recast as a barn burner. In the mid-1950s Sullivan left music to raise a family and work as a nurse, before coming back strong in 1969. During the height of FM rock and Disco, Sullivan became a worldwide jazz sensation (reaching goddess status in Japan) as she recorded a string of low-key but excellent albums that swung well into the Reagan decade. Everything about Sullivan was class, and she shared the spotlight with musicians ranging from saxophonist Scott Hamilton to horn master Doc Cheatham. She passed away in 1987.