Dionne Warwick…um…isn’t?

From the “who says you can’t learn anything on TV” file:

Dionne Warwick is celebrating 50 years in the music business, and all that time, she’s been known by the wrong name.

What’s that you say?

It’s true. In an interview this morning, she said there was a typo on the cover of her first album, forever changing her name from “Warrick” to “Warwick”.

I guess she must have liked the new name, to have stuck with it all these years, not like other artists who change their name on a whim. John Cougar didn’t like his stage name, so he added Mellencamp and then dropped the Cougar. And Prince? Let’s not even go there.

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4 Comments

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4 responses to “Dionne Warwick…um…isn’t?

  1. Kathryn

    Well, changing her name was probably a riskier proposition for an African-American woman trying to appeal to a crossover audience in the early 60s than for a white guy in the early 80s, or an African-American guy in the 1990s. And I have the sense (although my knowledge of the music business is entirely superficial) that by the time Prince was playing his games the balance of power between recording stars and producers had shifted somewhat–even if Ms. Warwick had wanted to change her name in the early years, she probably had a fat chance of doing it after the record label had promoted her under the wrong name. Granted, it looks like Mellencamp did something of that sort–making them add back his real last name. But Warwick was a product of a very different era, both for American culture in general and for the music industry in particular.

    Or, of course, maybe she just liked the name.

  2. Kathryn

    Well, both explanations would make sense and cover the known facts–and indeed, both could be true. I think it’s less that it sounds better when I say it (blushes!) than it is that in blogging, you don’t want to be the whole team and the dog under the wagon. It is a good thing to leave something for the commenters to say!

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