Clara Ann Fowler (November 8, 1927 – January 1, 2013), known by her professional name Patti Page, was an American singer of traditional pop music. She was the top-charting female vocalist and best-selling female artist of the 1950s,selling over 100 million records during a six decade long career. She was often introduced as "the Singin' Rage, Miss Patti Page". New York WNEW disc-jockey William B. Williams introduced her as "A Page in my life called Patti".
One of eight girls in a family of 11, Clara Fowler started her career singing country songs on radio station KTUL in Tulsa, and played weekend gigs with Art Klauser And His Oklahomans. She successfully auditioned for KTUL’s Meet Patti Page show, sponsored by the Page Milk Company, and took the name with her when she left.
Jack Rael, who was road manager and played baritone saxophone for the Jimmy Joy band, heard her on the radio and engaged her to sing with them; he later became her manager for over 40 years. In 1948 Page appeared on the top-rated Breakfast Club on Chicago radio, and sang with the Benny Goodman Septet. In the same year she had her first hit record, ‘Confess’, on which, in the cause of economy, she overdubbed her own voice to create the effect of a vocal group. In 1949, she used that revolutionary technique again on her first million-seller, ‘With My Eyes Wide Open I’m Dreaming’ (the added touch came with listing it as "the Patti Page Quartet").The song was re-released 10 years later with a more modern orchestral backing.
Also in 1950, "All My Love" became her first number one hit and spent several weeks at the top. That same year produced the biggest hit of her career, "The Tennessee Waltz." Notched at number one for months, it eventually became one of the best-selling singles of all time and prompted no less than six Top 40 covers during the following year.
During 1952-1953, Patti Page scored two more huge hits with "I Went to Your Wedding" and "The Doggie in the Window," both of which spent more than two months at number one. She gained her own television program, The Patti Page Show, in 1955 and moved into full-lengths with In the Land of Hi Fi and Manhattan Tower.
Page also proved more resilient to the rise of rock & roll than most of her contemporaries, hitting big in 1956 with "Allegheny Moon" and "Old Cape Cod" the next year. Page’s records continued to sell well into the 60s, and she had her last US Top 10 entry in 1965 with the title song from the Bette Davis-Olivia De Havilland movie Hush, Hush, Sweet Charlotte. Page also appeared extensively on US television during the 50s, on shows such as the Scott Music Hall, the Big Record variety show, and her own shows for NBC and CBS. She also made several films, including Elmer Gantry (1960), Dondi (1961, a comedy-drama, in which she co-starred with David Janssen) and Boys Night Out (1962).
In 1968 she recorded what some consider her signature song, "Have a Little Faith and Love Will Come to You." In the 70s, Page recorded mainly country material, and in the 80s, after many successful years with Mercury Records and Columbia Records, signed for the Nashville-based company Plantation Records, a move that reunited her with top record producer Shelby Singleton. In 1988, Page gained excellent reviews when she played the Ballroom in New York, her first appearance in that city for nearly 20 years. More than 10 years later she won a Grammy Award in the Traditional Pop Vocal Performance category for her album Live At Carnegie Hall - The 50th Anniversary Concert.
She continued to record into the 1990s, but it is touring where Patti found her success. She was greeted by fans, as well as stellar reviews from critics all over. In September of 2012, she announced her retirement from the music business, citing health issues as the reason.
Patti Page died following a battle with heart and lung disease on January 1, 2013, at a retirement community in Encinitas, California. She was 85 and just five weeks away from being honoured at the Grammy Awards with a Lifetime Achievement Award from The Recording Academy. Her death also came just a few days after the conclusion of the run of "Flipside: The Patti Page Story," an off-Broadway musical commemorating her life.
(Info edited from various sources, mainly AMG & Oldies.com)