b. Liverpool, England. Cornell had been a prominent member of the Vernons Girls when she married drummer Andy White and subsequently recorded solo for Decca Records when the original troupe was nearing its 1961 disbandment. She is remembered chiefly for the much-covered, Greek-flavoured film title theme to 1960’s Never On Sunday (her only UK Top 30 entry) and an ebullient ‘African Waltz’, which paled in the shadow of the bigger-selling John Dankworth instrumental. Its b-side, an arrangement of the Jon Hendricks jazz standard ‘Moanin’’, illustrated that, beyond mere pop, Cornell could unfurl a suppleness of vocal gesture that was denied to luckier but less stylistically adventurous contemporaries. In more light-hearted vein was Jack Good’s eccentric production of her 1962 duplication of the Blue-Belles’ US hit, ‘I Sold My Heart To The Junkman’, but despite airplay on the BBC Light Programme, this, too, could not supersede even the chart honours gained by ‘Never On Sunday’. In the 70s Cormell along with Ann Simmons formed the duo, the Pearls.
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