• 1945 – 1964
Nanette Workman was born in Brooklyn, New York, on November 20, 1945. She began her career at the age of four, in Jackson, Mississippi singing songs on the various television shows that aired on WLBT, a NBC subsidiary. She became co-host of WLBT’s the Mr. Magic Show, and, in 1962, co-host of Teen Tempos, a weekly meeting place for teenagers. Furthering her musical development, she also sat first violin with the Jackson Junior Symphony Orchestra. By the age of 19, her thirst for adventure drove her to pack her bags and return to her native New York City.
• 1964 – 1968
In New York, in 1964, and on short notice, Nanette replaced actress Michelle Lee as the female lead in the Broadway musical, How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying. In 1966, while performing with Eddie Brigade of the Young Rascals, she met Quebec producer Tony Roman. He convinced her to come to Canada, where he produced three albums for her. In 1967, Nanette was voted Quebec’s “Discovery of the Year.” Concurrently, she landed a photo shoot with David Bailey for Vogue, the celebrated fashion magazine. Those few pages attracted the attention of Pat Boone, who invited Nanette to Los Angeles to appear on The Pat Boone Show, where she performed You Know Where to Find Me . In the summer of 1968, alongside Tony Roman, she took the helm of Radio-Canada’s Fleurs d’amour, Fleurs d’amitié, but once again, her wanderlust resurfaced. This time, it was the British scene that beckoned.
• 1969 – 1974
In London, under the EMI label, Nanette recorded her first English album. She contributed regularly to a variety of BBC productions, and spent a full season alongside Peter Cook and Dudley Moore in Not Only,But Also. She performed frequently on the legendary British TV show Top of the Pops, and appeared in the first season of The Benny Hill Show on Thames TV. This performance is available on the 2004 DVD Megaset, Benny Hill Complete and Unadulterated.
At the same time, Nanette worked in production at London’s renowned Olympic Studios recording facility. But within the walls of this mythical place, it was her talent as a singer that the many international recording artists took note of.
Consequently, Nanette lent her voice to some of the great classic rock recordings: she is the female voice on the Rolling Stones’ Honky Tonk Women and with Madeline Bell and Doris Troy onYou Can’t Always Get What You Want, on John Lennon’s Power to the People, and on Ringo Starr’s It Don’t Come Easy. She also worked with George Harrison, Gary Wright, Ian Matthews, Badfinger, and many others.
In 1972, with Peter Frampton on guitar, Nanette recorded her second English album, entitled Grits and Cornbread. She participated in the recording of Madeline Bell’s album, which was produced by Led Zeppelin bassist John Paul Jones.
For two years, Nanette was the opening act for Johnny Hallyday, with whom she toured most of Europe, Africa, and Tahiti. Then, once again, something inside her told her it was time to move on.
• 1975 – 1980
Nanette returned to Canada, in 1975, and recorded Lady Marmalade, which began a new phase in her career. The four albums that followed included such hits as Danser danser, Donne Donne, Compte sur moi, Ce soir on m’invite and J’ai le goût de Baiser.
In 1976, Nanette did the unthinkable. On the advice of her bass player and co-writer, she turned down an offer to be the opening act for the Paul McCartney and Wings’ North American tour. Atlantic Records was so disappointed in her decision that they abandoned all interest in the singer and the self-titled album that she had in the works.
In 1977, backed by the funk band Rufus, Nanette finally did record an album entitled Nanette Workman at Record Plant Studios in Los Angeles. But the album never found the distribution strategy necessary for its success.
There was no use crying over spilt milk; Luc Plamondon who had already written for Nanette, asks her to join the cast of Starmania, his new rock opera in Paris, France. Nanette created and performed the role of Sadia, and recorded hit songs from the opera, including the smash success Ce soir on danse à Naziland. Later that year, she recorded the duet Aimer d’amour, with Georges Thurston, which went on to become a Francophone classic.
• 1980 – 1985
In 1981, Nanette reunited with Mick Jagger and The Rolling Stones to record the song Ain’t No Use in Crying from the album Tattoo You. She also became the vocal soloist for the entire B-side of French artist Cerrone’s Back Track 8 album. In 1982, the single Call Girl became Quebec’s best selling single of the year and won a Felix trophy at l’ADISQ.
That same year she toured with several Quebec artists from La Francophonie, including Plastic Bertrand, and newcomer Celine Dion.
• 1986 – 1999
1986 began with the recording of the album Changement D’adresse, a collaboration with Serge Fiori, the driving force behind the group Harmonium. Then, in 1990, once again under the wing of Luc Plamondon, Nanette returned to Paris to assume the role of La Diva in the rock opera La Légende de Jimmy. Concurrently, the play Starmania became a mega success in France — twelve years after its original release!
Her album Rock et Romance was released in 1994, and won a Félix award for rock album of the year at l’ADISQ.
In Paris, in 1996, Nanette recorded the album Une à une, which was released in Europe on the EMI label. The title track as well as the single Le temps de m’y faire was a success in Quebec ad Europe.
1999 saw the release of a photo essay published by Editions Stanke that aimed to illustrate the greatest moments of Nanette’s career.
• 2000 – 2005
The new millennium came on strong for Nanette: she was formally inducted into the Mississippi Music Hall of Fame, alongside Elvis Presley, John Lee Hooker, Jerry Lee Lewis, B.B. King and other Mississippi artists who have distinguished themselves internationally.
2001 marked Nanette’s return to television hosting, with the show Génération 70. Almost ten years after its creation, this series is still being broadcast regularly on Musimax and the TVA network.
Between 2001 and 2005, Nanette recorded three blues albums, “Roots ‘n Blues”, “Vanilla Blues Café” and “Mississippi Rolling Stone”, which were, critically, the best received of her career.
• 2008 – 2010
In August 2008, at Celine Dion’s invitation, Nanette gave a series of performances as part of a mega-concert to commemorate Quebec City’s 400th anniversary. The crowd was estimated at more than 250,000. The ratings were at their peak, and, in stores, the DVD was a huge success, even winning the Félix Award for DVD of the Year.
In November, Rock ‘’N Romance, the first authorized biography of the artist was released by Libre Expression. The book was quickly certified a bestseller and was highly praised by the Quebec press.
In November 2009, Nanette joined Dan Aykroyd, James Cotton, and the Downchild Blues Band on stage at Montreal’s Metropolis for a unique show that united some of the best from the blues world.
In August 2010, Nanette Workman returned to the studio alongside Steve Segal, ex guitarist of April Wine, and longtime musician with Nanette, to produce her latest CD, “Just Gettin’ Started” released in February, 2012.
With a career that spans no fewer than six decades, there are more than 30 million recordings sold around the world that contain, in one form or another, the incomparable voice of Nanette Workman.
FÉVRIER : 10 ET 11 : Répétitions pour show avec Dick Rivers 13- Olympia Dick Rivers; 14- St-Hyacynthe Dick Rivers, 15- HOLD St-Jérôme Dick Rivers, 17- Sherbrooke Dick Rivers, 18- Brossard Dick Rivers, 19- 3-Riv. Dick Rivers, 21- Baie-Comeau Dick Rivers, 22-HOLD Sept-Iles Dick Rivers, 27-Joliette Dick Rivers, 28- Granby Dick Rivers, MARS: 1- Capitole de Québec, Dick Rivers, 2- L’assomption Dick Rivers, 6- HOLD Gatineau Dick Rivers, 7- HOLD St-Jean sur Richelieu, 8- Rivière du Loup Dick Rivers, MAI : Retour de nos idoles les 2 et 3 JUIN : 6- HOLD Louiseville (CR), 13-HOLD Bénéfice (Anne) JUILLET : 4 HOLD Bénéfice Havre St-Pierre, 25 HOLD Lac St-Jean (RM)