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Clare Torry

Clare Torry
Clare Torry in 2003
Born (1947-11-29) 29 November 1947
United Kingdom
Occupation Singer
Known for "The Great Gig in the Sky"

Clare Torry (born 29 November 1947) is a British singer best known for performing the wordless vocals on the song "The Great Gig in the Sky" by the group Pink Floyd on their 1973 album The Dark Side of the Moon.

Contents

  • Career 1
  • Lawsuit 2
  • Recent work 3
  • References 4

Career

By the end of the 1960s, Clare Torry managed to start a career as a performer, mainly based on covers of popular songs.[1] Alan Parsons asked her to take part in Pink Floyd's recording of the album The Dark Side of the Moon, on the instrumental song penned by Richard Wright going under the name of "The Great Gig in the Sky".[1][2][3][4]

Since then, Torry has also performed as a session singer (singing on a number of 1970s UK TV adverts) and as a live backing vocalist with Kevin Ayers, Olivia Newton-John, Shriekback, The Alan Parsons Project (for which she also sang lead vocal on one track on their 1979 Eve album), Procol Harum mainman Gary Brooker, Matthew Fisher, Cerrone, Meat Loaf (a duet on the song "Nowhere Fast", and the hit single "Modern Girl") and Johnny Mercer. She reprised her Pink Floyd appearance during a few 1980s concerts with Roger Waters' band, and also contributed to Waters' 1986 soundtrack When the Wind Blows and to his 1987 album Radio K.A.O.S.. She sang with the David Gilmour-led Pink Floyd at a 1990 concert at Knebworth.

Torry also sang the Dolly Parton song "Love Is Like a Butterfly" as the theme music to the 1970s Wendy Craig/Geoffrey Palmer sitcom Butterflies. The song was released as a single in 1981. Torry also released the song "Love for Living" in 1969, which was produced by Ronnie Scott and Robin Gibb.

Torry sang backing vocals on the track "The War Song" from Culture Club's Waking Up with the House on Fire album in 1984, as well as on the track "Yellowstone Park" on the Tangerine Dream album Le Parc the following year. Her voice can also be heard singing "Love to Love You Baby" (originally by Donna Summer) during the opening scene of the cult BBC Play for Today production of Abigail's Party in 1977.

Torry is also credited on the 1987 album En Dejlig Torsdag (A Lovely Thursday) by the Danish pop rock band TV-2, where she sings in fashion similar to that of "The Great Gig in the Sky" at the end of the tracks "Stjernen I Mit Liv" ("The Star in my Life") and "I Baronessens Seng" ("In the Bed of the Baroness").

Lawsuit

In 2004, she sued Pink Floyd and EMI for songwriting royalties on the basis that her contribution to "The Great Gig in the Sky" constituted co-authorship with keyboardist Richard Wright. Originally, she was paid the standard flat fee of £30 for Sunday studio work. In 2005, an out-of-court settlement was reached in Torry's favour, although the terms of the settlement were not disclosed.[5] All releases after 2005 credit "Richard Wright/Clare Torry" for the "Great Gig in the Sky" segment.

Recent work

In February 2006, Clare Torry released a CD Heaven in the Sky, a collection of her early pop tunes from the 1960s and 1970s.

References

  1. ^ a b Dark Side' at 30: Alan Parsons"'".  
  2. ^ Dark Side' at 30: Roger Waters"'".  
  3. ^  
  4. ^ Dark Side' at 30: David Gilmour"'".  
  5. ^ "Seventies Singer". 2005. Retrieved 23 January 2009. A female vocalist may have become the first British artist to win an out-of-court settlement for a piece of music recorded over 30 years ago. Clare Torry was paid £30 to perform on Pink Floyd's 1973 album 'Dark Side of the Moon' and was given a written credit at the time. Yet the session singer, who contributed to the track The Great Gig in the Sky, took her claim to the  
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