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Helen Forrest (April 12, 1917 – July 11, 1999) was one of the most popular female jazz vocalists during America's Big Band era. She was born Helen Fogel to a Jewish family in Atlantic City, New Jersey on April 12, 1917. She first sang with her brother's band at the age of 10, and later began her career singing on CBS radio under the name Bonnie Blue.
Forrest achieved fame when bandleader Artie Shaw hired her in 1938. Shaw was looking for new talent when vocalist Billie Holiday had to leave the band after singing with the group for a short period of time. Forrest recorded 38 singles with Shaw's band. Two of her biggest hits with Shaw were the songs "They Say" and "All the Things You Are."
In late 1939, Forrest left Shaw and joined Benny Goodman, with whom she recorded a number of celebrated songs, including the hit song, "The Man I Love." She told the Pop Chronicles "Benny would look right above your eyebrows, in the middle, right on top of the brow. He was a very strange man."
She recorded with Nat King Cole and Lionel Hampton in 1940. In 1941, Forrest was hired by Harry James. It was with the Harry James Orchestra that she recorded what are arguably her most popular numbers, including "I Had the Craziest Dream" in 1942 and "I Don't Want to Walk Without You." Forrest also dated James, until he met the woman he would later marry, Betty Grable.
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