Lessons on Being a Star from the Late Great Sarah Vaughan


In the 1940’s, Sarah Vaughan was on top of the charts – all the while, battling with record companies, managers and husbands about what songs to sing.

In the end, this jazz legend did things her way. As a result, she became a star. Here are 3 ways Sarah Vaughan made it happen.

When I sing, trouble can sit right on my shoulder and I don’t even notice.

You could see it on her face – her passion and love of singing. We can all be a star if we just focus on what we love the most. Worry not about money, for you’ll live a life of regret if you don’t at least try.

I don’t feel like a big star

Sarah Vaughan was well known in the 1940s, specializing in jazz, then venturing into pop music. But she never saw herself as a big celebrity. That’s because she wasn’t trying to be one, and wasn’t performing for that purpose. Today, too many people are working to gain attention, praise and recognition. If we work for the pure joy of producing something special – people will inevitably notice.

I like to be referred to as a good singer of good songs in good taste.

My old boss in the radio business once told me that the key to success in broadcasting was consistency. In his words: “You’re only as good as your last performance.” I didn’t have to be a genius, he said. I just had to be consistently good. Sarah Vaughan was like that. You knew exactly what to expect from her, and she performed at the same high standard every time. To gain prominence in your field, be consistent.

Unlike other singers, Sarah Vaughan’s voice remained strong as she aged.

Over time, she became less known – but kept singing throughout the 1970s and 80s.

A heavy smoker, “The Divine One,” as she was nicknamed, died of lung cancer at the young age of 66 in 1990.

She left behind a legacy of ageless music.

You’re a Star if you: Do what you love, focus on the work, and are consistent.  

Now it’s time to sit back, relax and listen to one of the greatest voices of all time. Here is Sarah Vaughan’s unique version of “Over the Rainbow” with her own jazzy twist.

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