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Freda Payne | Music & Medicine

Freda Charcilia Payne (born September 19, 1942) is an American singer and actress. Payne is best known for her career in music during the mid–1960s through the mid–1980s. Her most notable record is her 1970 hit single, "Band of Gold". Payne was also an actress in musicals and film, as well as the host of a TV talk show. Payne is the older sister of Scherrie Payne, a former singer with the American vocal group The Supremes.



Payne was born in Detroit, Michigan, and grew up listening to jazz singers, such as Ella Fitzgerald and Billie Holiday. As a teenager, she attended the Detroit Institute of Musical Arts; she soon began singing radio commercial jingles, and took part in (and won many) local TV and radio talent shows. In 1963, she moved to New York City and worked with many entertainers, including Quincy Jones, Pearl Bailey, and Bill Cosby. The next year, her debut album, a jazz recording with arranger Manny Albam entitled After the Lights Go Down Low and Much More!!! was released on the Impulse! label.

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