Madeline Bell  

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
That's what friends are for

Madeline Bell (born July 23, 1942, Newark, New Jersey) is an American soul singer, who became famous as a performer in the United Kingdom during the 1960s, having arrived from the US in the gospel show Black Nativity in 1962, with vocal group The Bradford Singers.


She worked as a session singer, most notably backing for Dusty Springfield, and can be found on early Donna Summer material as well. Her first major solo hit was a cover version of Dee Dee Warwick's single "I'm Gonna Make You Love Me", which performed better on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 chart than the original.

Madeline then joined contemporary pop combo Blue Mink, with whom she had a number of Top 20 hits with Philips Records in the UK, including "Melting Pot", "Our World", "Randy", "Banner Man", "Good Morning Freedom", "Sunday", "By The Devil I Was Tempted" and "Stay With Me". Before joining Blue Mink in late 1969 she sang solo, and her cover version of "Picture Me Gone" is still a Northern Soul favourite today, as is "What Am I Supposed To Do", from 1968, a two-minute B-side tune co-written with future Led Zeppelin member John Paul Jones, then working as one of London's most in-demand session bassists (Bell also sang backup on Joe Cocker's "Bye Bye Blackbird" in 1969, which featured a guitar solo from another Led Zeppelin member, Jimmy Page) Jones later arranged, produced and recorded Bell's 1973 RCA album Comin' Atcha. She sang backing vocals on Rod Stewart's 1971 song "Every Picture Tells A Story", and contributed to the soundtrack of the romance film A Touch of Class (1973).

Bell has also provided backing vocals on a number of other artists' recordings notably Tom Parker's neo-classical arrangements and in 1975 performed with Sunny and Sue (originally members of Brotherhood of Man) at the Eurovision Song Contest in Stockholm, Sweden, providing backing vocals for the German entry "Ein Lied Kann Eine Brücke Sein", performed by Joy Fleming. She worked with Kiki Dee and Lesley Duncan. In 1976 she sang backing vocals on We Can't Go on Meeting Like This, the second album by the band Hummingbird.

She also joined the French disco group Space providing lead vocals on two of their albums. One of the songs she provided lead vocals on was "Save Your Love For Me" from 1978 which charted high in many countries. She also provided backing vocals for another French artist; Cerrone. Madeline also appears on Giorgio Moroder's 1979 album, E=MC2.

Since the 1970s, Bell has continued singing solo and also performed in a number of stage shows. She continues to live in Spain since her husband, drummer Barry Reeves (once of The Ferris Wheel) died in February 2010 and regularly tours Europe singing jazz and popular songs. In 1982, she added background vocals to the fantasy film Alicja. She then again teamed up with John Paul Jones in 1985, contributing performances ("Take It or Leave It" and "Here I Am") to the soundtrack album Scream for Help.

Madeline was the voice behind the 1980s advertising campaign for Brooke Bond D, a brand of tea bag in the UK. The music was composed by Ronnie Bond. She also provided vocals on the jingles of another 1980s advertising campaign, British Gas' Wonderfuel Gas, which began in 1982.

Solo discography

  • Bell's a Poppin' (1967)
  • Doin' Things (1968)
  • I'm Gonna Make You Love Me (1968)
  • Madeline Bell (1971)
  • Comin' Atcha (1973)
  • This Is One Girl (1976)
  • Beat out That Rhythm on a Drum (1998)
  • Blessed (2000)

Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Madeline Bell" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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