Timi Yuro


Timi Yuro  (August 4, 1940 – March 30, 2004), was an American singer and songwriter.  Sometimes called "the little girl with the big voice," she is considered to be one of the first blue-eyed soul stylists of the rock era.  According to one critic, "her deep, strident, almost masculine voice, staggered delivery and the occasional sob created a compelling musical presence."  Yuro possessed a contralto vocal range.   (More from Wikipedia)
So who is she? Linda Pierre King is a native of Houston and moved to New York in the mid-1960's.  She became active in the folksinging circuit and spent a lot of her time at a beatnik coffee house called Beanie Baby's Java Hut.  Apparently the recordings featured on the Heart Beats CD were made in New York but had never been officially released before this. 
Meanwhile, Norm Wooster was adrift in the Big Apple after seeing his musical career evaporate.  The self-styled "king of barbershop" had numerous hit songs in the 1950's and later became a talent scout for Play-Tone Records.  After a bitter dispute in 1962 with Play-Tone chairman Sol Siler, the #1 hit "Lovin' You Lots and Lots" was released in 1964 under the name Norm Wooster Singers, though Wooster did not perform on the record and had his songwriting credits excised.  This song was also the opening track on the soundtrack album for the 1996 Tom Hanks movie That Thing You Do! about a one-hit wonder rock band called (naturally) the Wonders
Norm Wooster then immersed himself in the folk music world in New York and saw Linda Pierre King perform at the Beanie Baby club.  He fell in love with her, and they were later married.  Through her, Wooster eased his way back into the music scene and performed in a variety of styles from psychedelic rock to disco to country. 
Linda Pierre King might also have helped moderate Norm Wooster's right-wing political beliefs; he had been friends with members of the notorious House Un-American Activities Committee (HUAC), whereas King was a follower of philosopher and author Ayn Rand.  The HUAC connection had exacerbated the falling-out with Sol Siler, since HUAC was investigating actress Suzanne Pleshette, whom Siler was dating at the time.  (See below).
(April 2012)

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Well, apparently I got fooled by some of the back story that was created for the 1996 Tom Hanks movie called That Thing You Do!, about a one-hit wonder rock band called the Wonders; I have never actually seen the film.  There is no such person as Norm Wooster or Sol Siler, and Play-Tone Records was the fictitious record company that released the single by the Wonders.  The supposed hit song by the Norm Wooster Singers, "Lovin' You Lots and Lots" was actually written by Tom Hanks.  Linda Pierre King evidently remained in the Houston area and never moved to New York City
I ran across the biography in more than one location that appeared to be reliable, such as the post on last.fm that gave a biography called "Norm Wooster: The Myth and the Legend" (and several Amazon.com and YouTube items, though one YouTube video disclaimed the New York City connection).  Birth dates, parents' names, recordings, and name dropping peppered the entry; besides Linda Pierre King and Suzanne Pleshette (who was apparently not ever investigated by HUAC), the biography also mentions white soul singer Timi YuroJerry Murad and the HarmonicatsBob Dylan, and Kurt Cobain.  Turns out thatlast.fm is a wiki like Wikipedia; the real story can be found in several entries on Wikipedia.  It sure seemed legit to me at the time; I figured, how many people named Linda Pierre King could there be in the world who were folksingers?  
Anyway, sorry about that, and I apologize for my part in propagating this nonsense.  But that doesn't make Linda Pierre King's music any less wonderful.   
(October 2014)
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Someone put together a backstory for the characters in the Tom Hanks film That Thing You Do!.  Some of the people were entirely made-up; presumably those are the ones who are actually in the film.  Others are famous to one degree or another:  Bob DylanSuzanne PleshetteKurt Cobain of NirvanaJerry Murad's HarmonicatsTimi Yuro.  


And then they threw Linda Pierre King into the mix – and that just isn't playing fair.  Neither one of the CD's that I have provides any information to speak of about her.  The liner notes in one of them describe her as a quintessential hippie folksinger, and the small picture that is included bears that out.  Now anyone trying to ferret out information about Linda Pierre King has to get past all of the made-up story line about her hanging out in a Greenwich Village club called Beanie's something-or-other, and then meeting and marrying the so-called King of Barber Shop


(April 2015/2)

Last edited: March 22, 2021