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Patti Page is shown wearing part of a weekend ensemble by Wilroy of New York during her business trip in Miami on March 24, 1951. / Patti Page performs the Tennessee Waltz during an NCAA college football game in Tennessee on Sept. 26, 2009. - Provided courtesy of AP Photo / Wade Payne

Patti Page dies: 'Tennessee Waltz' singer was 85

01/02/2013 by Corinne Heller

Patti Page, a pop singer dubbed "The Singing Rage," who rose to fame in the 1950s with songs such as "(How Much Is That) Doggie In the Window," "Old Cape Cod," and "Tennessee Waltz," died on January 1 -- New Year's Day -- at age 85.

She passed away in Encinitas, California and is survived by her son, Daniel O'Curran, daughter, Kathleen Ginn and sister, Peggy Layton, her rep said in a statement to OTRC.com on Wednesday.

The singer, born Clara Ann Fowler, began her singing career in Tulsa, Oklahoma. She recorded 50 albums, including 14 platinum records and 19 gold ones. She was considered one of the most successful female singers of the 1950s.

Her 1950 cover of "Tennessee Waltz" hit No. 1 the pop, country and R&B charts in the United States. The track was made a state song of Tennessee in 1965. It was also popular in Japan, Billboard reported in 1967

"I knew that it was important," she told the Tennessean in 2000. "I have always enjoyed singing it. I have never tired of it."

In 1958, Page told the Associated Press that her advice to aspiring singers was: "Stay at home and work. Don't come to New York. I think a young singer with talent has a better chance then ever before to hit the big time quickly, thanks to television and the recording industry, which are hungry for talent."

While she enjoyed most of her success in the 1950s and early 1960s, her career spanned seven decades. In 1998, she won a Grammy for her record "Patti Page Live at Carnegie Hall -the 50th Anniversary Concert." She was set to be honored with a Lifetime Achievement Award by The Recording Academy, which chooses the Grammy winners, in February.

"Grammy winner Patti Page was an extremely talented artist known for her unique and smooth vocal style," Neil Portnow, President and CEO of The Recording Academy, which hands out the Grammys, said in a statement obtained by OTRC.com.

"I recently had the privilege of speaking with Ms. Page and informing her that she would be recognized with The Recording Academy Lifetime Achievement Award this upcoming February, and she was grateful and excited to be receiving the honor," he said. "Our industry has lost a remarkable talent and a true gift, and our sincere condolences go out to her family, friends and fans who were inspired by her work."

No funeral arrangements have not yet been made, her rep said.

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