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The partnership would provide Bacharach with the freedom to produce Warwick without the control of recording company executives and company A&R men.
Warwick's musical ability and education would also allow Bacharach to compose more challenging tunes.
As they became more successful, Lee and Marie began performing with the group, and they were augmented by pop/R&B singer Judy Clay, whom Lee had unofficially adopted.
Elvis Presley eventually expressed an interest in having them join his touring entourage.
Warwick recalled, in her 2002 A&E Biography, that "a man came running frantically backstage at the Apollo and said he needed background singers for a session for Sam "the Man" Taylor and old big-mouth here spoke up and said 'We'll do it! I wish I remembered the gentleman's name because he was responsible for the beginning of my professional career." The backstage encounter led to the group being asked to sing background sessions at recording studios in New York.
Soon, the group were in demand in New York music circles for their background work for such artists as the Drifters, Ben E.
After personnel changes (Dionne and Doris left the group after achieving solo success), the Gospelaires became the recording group the Sweet Inspirations, who had some chart success, but were much sought-after as studio background singers.
From the phrase "don't make me over", Bacharach and David created their first top 40 pop hit (#21) and a top 5 U. after "Don't Make Me Over" hit in 1962, she answered the call of her manager ("C'mon, baby, you gotta go"), left school and went on a tour of France, where critics crowned her "Paris' Black Pearl," having been introduced on stage at Paris Olympia that year by Marlene Dietrich.She had a sister, Delia ("Dee Dee"), who died in 2008, and a brother, Mancel Jr., who was killed in an accident in 1968 at age 21.Her parents were both African American, and she also has Native American, Brazilian and Dutch ancestry.She was raised in East Orange, New Jersey, and was a Girl Scout for a period of time.After finishing East Orange High School in 1959, Warwick pursued her passion at the Hartt College of Music in West Hartford, Connecticut.
She also landed some work with her group singing backing vocals for recording sessions in New York City.