“He wasn’t corrupted by the mainstream. He used jazz to enrich and renew it, and left behind a lasting legacy. Very like a king.” – Time Magazine
He was dubbed the Sepia Sinatra in the 1940s because he was the only challenger to Frank’s role as America’s premier singer. It’s not difficult to hear why with his jazz leanings, his blues undertones and a voice as smooth as silk he appealed to just about everyone. . .Black or White
Cole, a heavy smoker, was diagnosed with lung cancer in 1964. He died the following year, aged 45. In March 2000, with Ray Charles as his presenter, Nat King Cole was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. The man who once said, “Critics don’t buy records. They get ’em free,” was a twentieth century great who died far too young. He left us with one of the most wonderful recorded legacies ranging from pure jazz to sublimely romantic ballads.
“All the musicians dug him. We went there just to listen to him because nobody was like him. That cat could play! He was unique.” –an unknown musician who saw Cole in the Los Angeles clubs