Percy Faith

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Percy Faith
Percy Faith
Faith at work in 1949
Background info
Birthday/Birthplace April 7, 1908
Toronto, Ontario
Deceased February 9, 1976(1976-02-09)
Encino, California
Profession(s) Bandleader, orchestrator, composer

Percy Faith (April 7, 1908 – February 9, 1976) was a famous conductor, arranger and composer of Canadian origin. He was known for his ingenious arrangements for popular music themes, giving them an attractive rhythm, style and sound for listeners of his time. Considered a classic music called Easy-listening and Instrumental, he managed to popularize this style with his contemporary colleague Ray Conniff and be both a resounding success for the record label in which they recorded. The main themes of Faith are: Delicate, The song from Moulin Rouge, Theme from A summer place and Theme for young lovers, of which only the latter did not reach the # 1 position of Billboard remaining only at # 35 on lists.

Percy Faith’s Biography

Percy was born in Toronto, Canada, in 1908, and was the firstborn son of a married couple made up of the tailor named Abraham Faith and his wife Minnie, who had a total of 8 children. From an early age Percy showed a special interest in music, revealing himself very early as a child prodigy, when playing melodies in a very fluid way in front of a piano; He was the first member in the family history to become a musician. He studied piano at the Canadian Academy of Spadina Road. In 1920, when he was still a child, he began earning a living in a job that gained fame during those years, as a film room pianist, when he made silent films.

Later, the family changed their address due to their precarious economic situation. At that time Faith decided to use her earnings to pay for her studies at the Conservatory of Music in Toronto, where she was a disciple of prominent concert artists such as Frank Welsman and perfected her handling of harmony, composition and harmonic structure. Faith promised to become a leading concert pianist, but fate would drastically change her expectations. In 1926, while Percy rehearsed at home, his younger sister of three years, Gertrude, played with matches; moments later he accidentally burned his clothes and shouted terrified by the fire and burns. Percy went to the room and, finding her engulfed in flames, desperately took off her clothes and burned her hands badly. Both saved their lives, but Percy had to convalesce for 9 months, unable to play the piano. “I took a pencil between my bandages and decided to study composition”would say years later.

He contracted marriage in 1928 with Mary Palange, with whom he had two children: Peter and Marilyn. Later, in 1933, he began working for the former CKN and CKCL radio stations of the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, where he remained until 1940.

In 1945 he became a citizen of the United States and began recording for RCA Victor. Later he would work briefly in the studios of Decca Records, to later change to the CBS Columbia label, where he would collaborate actively with the outstanding musician Mitch Miller. His experience and ability as an arranger and director allowed him to support the musical work of several stars of the Columbia.

However, his work went beyond being the musical support of various singers, and during the 1950s and 1960s he recorded orchestral versions of several popular songs. His style was melodic, based on special arrangements for strings and female choruses that gave a special effect on the sonority of the melodies.

His best known songs were Delicado (1952), Song from the Moulin Rouge (1953) and the famous Theme from a summer place (1960), which won the Grammy Award for the best recording of 1961. Faith is the artist who sold the most singles during the era of American popular singers and Rock and Roll.

With its musical presence on the Broadway stages, Hollywood Percy increased its popularity in early 1962 with its versions and special arrangements for youth themes of that time. His albums “Themes for young lovers” were the best sellers during those years and brought Faith sound to a generation of young listeners. Next to Ray Conniff, record label partner, became the decisive element for the consolidation of the musical phenomenon called easy listening. The popularity of this musical style lasted until the late 1960s and early 1970s, when he received his second Grammy Award in 1969 for his album “Love theme from Romeo and Juliet.” Confronted with psychedelia, hard rock and progressive rock, Faith began to experience the change in the musical tastes of young people, so his fame was gradually decreasing. Even so, he tried to keep himself updated and released his version of the songs “Jesus Christ superstar” “Black magic woman”.

Despite being known for her recording career, Faith also recorded several films and received an Academy Award nomination for her screen adaptation of the Doris Day musical theme “Love me or leave me”.

Percy Faith died of cancer in Encino California and was buried at Hillside Memorial Park Cemetery in Culver City California.

More Facts about Percy Faith

The Percy Faith’s statistics like age, body measurements, height, weight, bio, wiki, net worth posted above have been gathered from a lot of credible websites and online sources. But, there are a few factors that will affect the statistics, so, the above figures may not be 100% accurate.

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