Lesley Gore

May 2, 1946 - February 16, 2015
  • Songs
  • Artistfacts ®
  • When Brooklyn-born and Tenafly, New Jersey-raised Lesley Gore recorded a couple of demos with her vocal coach, she probably didn't expect them to make their way to the in-tray of the president of the Mercury record label. He signed the 16-year-old singer and linked her up with producer Quincy Jones.
  • Gore and Jones chose "It's My Party" out of a stack of demos to record for her debut single. It was rush released as Phil Spector intended recording the song with The Crystals and climbed all the way to #1 on the Hot 100.
  • Gore reeled off a number of other successful singles between 1963 and 1967, including "Judy's Turn To Cry," (the sequel to "It's My Party"), "She's A Fool," "You Don't Own Me," "That's the Way Boys Are," and "Maybe I Know." In total she racked up 11 Top 40 hits on the Hot 100.
  • Gore was a junior at the Dwight School for Girls when "It's My Party" became a #1 hit and she continued to combine her singing career with her studies throughout the 1960s. After high school, she attended Sarah Lawrence College, all all-female university, graduating in 1968 with a degree in English/American literature.
  • She also tried her hand at acting. Gore portrayed Catwoman's sidekick Pussycat in two episodes of the 1960's cult television show Batman lip-synching "California Nights" in one of the shows. She also appeared in Smokey Joe's Cafe on Broadway.
  • Her brother Michael Gore was the musical supervisor on Fame and was responsible for coming up with the songs for the movie. Lesley helped him out, penning the lyrics for "Out Here On My Own," which garnered an Academy Award nomination for Best Original Song.
  • Gore officially came out to the public when she hosted several episodes of the PBS series In The Life, during the mid 2000s, which dealt with gay and lesbian issues. She stated in a 2005 interview with After Ellen that she had been living with her partner for more than 23 years. It was later reported that Gore's partner was a jewelry designer, Lois Sasson.
  • Lesley Gore passed away on February 16, 2015 from lung cancer at New York University Langone Medical Center. She was 68.
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