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The Carpenters


Karen Carpenter had one of the saddest voices in pop music history. She was a pioneer for the musically melancholy: her collected yet soulfully emotional inflections matched her brother Richard's airtight production and organic arrangements. They brought wistful and even demure music to the charts in the 1970s, a time when flamboyancy saturated the airwaves. Whether harmonizing on lovelorn epics such as Leon Russel's "Superstar" or more up-tempo ditties (the self-penned "Top of the World"), the Carpenters created atmosphere. Their close brother/sister harmonies soared above the melodies, creating sonic textures that have yet to be equaled. Karen died in 1983 after losing a prolonged battle with anorexia nervosa.
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