Never formally trained in music, Pearl Bailey credited her love
of music to growing up in a "Holy Roller" evangelical church
where her father was the minister. In her early career in
amateur shows and nightclubs she developed her throaty
style, embellished with asides and ad libs.
Pearl Bailey sang with bands, later on stage and in films. The
all-black version of Hello, Dolly! is one of her best-known
roles; she played that role from 1967 to 1969 and in a later
revival. Pearl Bailey was a frequent guest on television variety
shows and had her own show on ABC in 1970-71.
At age 67, Pearl Bailey graduated from Georgetown
University with a bachelor's degree in theology