Eartha Kitt

Eartha Kitt
Rick Maiman / Associated Press

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Eartha Kitt
Music: South side of the 6600 block of Hollywood Boulevard
Actress | Singer
Born Jan. 17, 1927 in North, SC
Died Dec. 25, 2008 of cancer in Weston, CT

A self-proclaimed "sex kitten," famous for her catlike purr, Eartha Kitt was one of America's most versatile performers, winning two Emmys and nabbing a third nomination. She also was nominated for several Tonys and two Grammys.

Her career spanned six decades, from her start as a dancer with the famed Katherine Dunham troupe to cabarets and acting and singing on stage, in movies and on television.

Her first album, "RCA Victor Presents Eartha Kitt," came out in 1954, featuring such songs as "I Want to Be Evil," "C'est Si Bon" and the gold digger's theme song "Santa Baby," which is revived on radio each Christmas.

The next year, the record company released the follow-up album "That Bad Eartha," which featured "Let's Do It," "Smoke Gets in Your Eyes" and "My Heart Belongs to Daddy."

In 1996, she was nominated for a Grammy in the category of traditional pop vocal performance for her album "Back in Business." She also had been nominated in the children's recording category for the 1969 record "Folk Tales of the Tribes of Africa."

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