Maxene (1918-95) was the assertive one, Patty (1920-2013) was the fun-loving one and LaVerne (1915-67) was the serious one. Together they were known as the Andrews Sisters. Born and raised in Minnesota, the sisters won a talent contest in Minneapolis in 1931 that led to an invitation to join a traveling vaudeville show. The sisters toured the country imitating their idols, the Boswell Sisters, until their big break in October 1937. That was when Jack Kapp, head of Decca Records, heard them singing from a New York City hotel on his car radio. He sent an agent to offer them an audition, which led to a recording contract. Their first trip to a Decca recording studio the following month produced a hit, "Bei Mir Bist Du Schoen," and from then through the '40s they were queens of the radio and jukebox. What they lacked in musical talent, they made up for in enthusiasm and showmanship. The girls frequently feuded and often did not speak to each other. They recorded 47 songs with Bing, several of which went gold. Initially, when Jack Kapp, Decca president, approached Bing to sing with the Sisters he said no. Kapp insisted, and after their first recording date Bing was smitten. "I'll record with them anytime they want. They can pick the material," Bing told Kapp. When the Sisters recorded with Bing they used their musical director, Vic Schoen, instead of Bing's, John Scott Trotter, to do the arrangements and conduct the orchestra. Here is a list of Bing's recordings with the Sisters:

    September 20, 1939

  1. Ciribiribin
  2. Yodelin' Jive

  3. September 27, 1943
  4. Pistol Packin' Mama
  5. Victory Polka
  6. Jingle Bells
  7. Santa Claus in Coming to Town

  8. June 30, 1944
  9. Hot Time in the Town of Berlin
  10. Is You Is or Is You Ain't Ma Baby

  11. July 25, 1944
  12. Don't Fence Me In (first song to top the Billboard country chart)
  13. The Three Caballeros

  14. December 8, 1944
  15. There's a Fellow Waiting in Poughkeepsie
  16. Ac-cent-chu-ate the Positive

  17. June 29, 1945
  18. Along the Navajo Trail
  19. Good, Good, Good

  20. July 3, 1945
  21. Happy Happy Happy Wedding Day
  22. Betsy

  23. May 11, 1946
  24. Route 66
  25. South America, Take It Away

  26. March 19, 1947
  27. Anything You Can Do
  28. There's No Business Like Show Business

  29. March 27, 1947
  30. Go West Young Man
  31. Tallahassee

  32. May 12, 1947
  33. The Freedom Train

  34. November 25, 1947
  35. Apalachicola, FLA
  36. You Don't Have to Know the Language

  37. December 17, 1947
  38. A Hundred and Sixty Acres
  39. At the Flying W

  40. April 14, 1949
  41. Be-Bop Spoken Here (with Patty Andrews)
  42. Wedding Day

  43. May 10, 1949
  44. Twelve Days of Christmas
  45. Here Comes Santa Claus

  46. November 25, 1949
  47. Quicksilver
  48. Have I Told You Lately That I Love You?

  49. February 15, 1950
  50. Lock, Stock and Barrel
  51. Ask Me no Questions

  52. March 24, 1950
  53. Life is so Peculiar
  54. High on the List

  55. LaVerne, Bing, Patty, Maxene September 7, 1950
  56. Poppa Santa Claus
  57. Mele Kalikimaka
  58. If I Were a Bell (with Patty Andrews)

  59. February 1, 1951
  60. Black Ball Ferry Line
  61. The Yodeling Ghost

  62. February 8, 1951
  63. Forsaking All Others
  64. Sparrow in the Tree Top

  65. February 21, 1952
  66. I'll Si-Si Ya in Bahia
  67. The Live Oak Tree

  68. September 5, 1952
  69. South Rampart Street Parade
  70. Cool Water

  71. (The sisters dissolved their act in 1953.)

    December 23, 1954
  72. Dissertation on a State of Bliss -- a.k.a. "Love and Learn" (with Patty Andrews)

The 3 sisters reunited in 1956 and recorded several albums for Capitol records, beginning with a greatest hits album. Their last public performance was on the Dean Martin television show in 1966. LaVerne died of cancer the following year. Patty and Maxene attempted to keep the act together by hiring a replacement for LaVerne, Joyce De Young. The act survived on and off until 1975, when Patty and Maxene parted ways forever.

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