Dionne Warwick Biography

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Marie Warwick Early Life

Marie Warwick (Marie Dionne Warwick), born 12 December 1940, a six-time Grammy Award-winning singer, actress, and television host. Dionne Warwick sang in a gospel trio before recording her first hit songs, including “Walk on By” and “I Say a Little Prayer.” After a lull in her career in the 1970s, her album Dionne (1979) sold a million copies. She went on to release the albums Heartbreaker (1982) and How Many Times Can We Say Goodbye? (1983). In 2012, Warwick celebrated her 50th anniversary in the music business with the album Now. She filed for bankruptcy the following year.

After finishing high school in 1959, Warwick pursued her passion at the Hartt College of Music in Hartford, Connecticut. She also landed some work with her group singing backing vocals for recording sessions in New York City. During one session, Warwick met Burt Bacharach. Bacharach hired her to record demos featuring songs written by him and lyricist Hal David. A record executive liked Warwick’s demo so much that Warwick got her own record deal.

“I really attribute it to remaining who I am and not jumping ship, being completely cognizant of what the people … are accustomed to hearing from me.”[On her longevity as a musician.]” — Dionne Warwick.

Marie Dionne Warwick Biography and Profile

Dionne Warrick on December 12, 1940, in East Orange, New Jersey. Dionne Warwick comes from a gospel musical background as the daughter of a record promoter and a gospel group manager and performer. As a teenager, Warwick started up her group, the Gospelaires, with her sister, Dee Dee, and aunt Cissy Houston.

Education and Music Scholarship

Warwick received a music scholarship to the University of Hartford in Connecticut. During a session with The Drifters, music conductor and composer Burt Bacharach heard her unique voice.

Dionne Warrick Music Career

Dionne Warrick had her first hit within a year with Don’t Make Me Over. She has had more hits in the charts than any other female vocalist except Aretha Franklin. Warwick reached the top of the pop charts for the first time in 1974 with “Then Came You,” which she recorded with the Spinners. But then Warwick suffered a career slump for several years.

In 1979, she made a triumphant return to the charts with the ballad “I’ll Never Love This Way Again.” She also soon became a fixture on television with the music program Solid Gold, which she hosted in the early 1980s. Warwick also had several successful collaborative efforts. In 1982, she made the charts with “Friends In Love” with Johnny Mathis, and “Heart Breaker” with Barry Gibb.

Around this time, Warwick scored one of the biggest hits of her career with “That’s What Friends Are For.” Stevie Wonder, Elton John and Gladys Knight also appeared on this 1985 No. 1 hit, which was an AIDS charity single written by Bacharach and Carole Bayer Sager. “Love Power,” her duet with Jeffrey Osbourne two years later, marked her next major hit.

Dionne Warwick Problems and Challenges

Warwick encountered some challenges beginning in the 1990s. Marie Warwick name is among the brightest in recording industry history, her songs providing the soundtrack for a generation and earning her a place as one of the most successful hit-makers of all time. After more than five decades of music-making that won her five Grammy awards, more than 60 charted singles and global album sales totalling more than 100 million copies, Dionne Warwick might have been assumed to have earned herself a comfortable retirement.

Dionne Warwick bankruptcy filing revealed financial tangles that belie her musical success. At the age of 72, the pop and R&B legend who once reaped seven-figure pay cheques and a glittering lifestyle was down to her last $1,000 in cash and mired in $10 million of tax debt, it claims. The 50-page document, lodged in a New Jersey bankruptcy court, provided details the particulars of Warwick’s personal finances, even down to her monthly $90 bill for garbage disposal and the fact that she underwent a debt counselling session over the internet.

Warwick income exceeded her outgoings by just $10 a month, she owed $20,000 on her credit card, and debts totaling $505,737 to a former lawyer and a former business manager. Personal assets total just over $25,000.

“We had no other resort other than to file bankruptcy so that we could get this off her back finally,” her bankruptcy attorney, Daniel Stolz, told Rolling Stone, declaring his client an “innocent victim of terrible mismanagement” during the 1980s and 1990s.

Though Warwick is up to date with her taxes, her debt to the Internal Revenue Service is the result of dues accumulated on tax bills dating back to 1991. It was revealed in the late 1990s that she had a lien against her for unpaid taxes. In 2002, she was arrested in a Miami airport for possession of marijuana. She lost her sister, Dee Dee, in 2008, and her cousin, Whitney Houston, four years later. Despite these personal losses, Warwick continued to perform and to record new music.

“Before she knew it, she owed a gazillion dollars in taxes. She’s actually paid more than the face amount of the taxes, but with all of the crazy interest and penalties that they add, the number kept mushrooming,” said Mr Stolz.

In 2012, Warwick celebrated her 50th year in music with the album Now. The recording features songs written by Bacharach and David. She once explained her longevity to Jet magazine, saying, “I really attribute it to remaining who I am and not jumping ship, being completely cognizant of what the people … are accustomed to hearing from me.”

With two children’s books, a best-selling autobiography, a fragrance line, a new album and a current world tour to supplement her 50 years of showbusiness cheques, the question of Warwick’s disappearing fortune is indeed baffling. It was not the first time that money woes have surfaced; in 1993, she filed for so-called “Chapter 11” protection from tax debts – a case that was resolved after she surrendered three cars including her BMW.

Mr Stolz said: “Just because someone is a well-known, prominent celebrity doesn’t mean they’re conversant in their financial affairs. They rely heavily on people and frequently wind up waking up someday saying ‘Jeez, how did I get in this mess and how do I get out of it?'”

Warwick Psychic Friends Network

In the 1990s, Warwick became the public face of the Psychic Friends Network, a telephone service that connected callers with clairvoyants for $3.99 a minute. It earned her $3 million a year before the corporation that owned the service went into bankruptcy. Critics of Warwick’s owned bankruptcy filing took to web forums to joke that given her experience with the Psychic Friends Network, she should have seen her money troubles coming. Some question the extent of her financial suffering.

“I have no pity for any celebrities who make more in a month than most Americans make in a year AND file their taxes on time, who cannot pay their debts,” stated one.

Another wrote: “Where did all the money go? Good God, she must have more than $25,000 in assets.”


Marie Warwick, a former United Nations Global Ambassador for the Food and Agriculture Organization and United States Ambassador of Health.

Marie Warwick Family

Marie Warwick tried marriage twice – both times with the same man, William Elliot, a television actor. They wed in 1966, divorced in May 1967, but then remarried three months later. “It was a case of can’t do with, can’t do without, so I married him again,” she later stated.

They had two sons, David Elliott and Damon Elliott – both of whom now also work in the music industry – but divorced for a second time in 1975. Mr Elliot revealed during divorce proceedings that his wife was, at that time, earning $100,000 a month – 200 times his own income. His demand for $2,000 in spousal support was denied.

“It’s hard when the woman is the breadwinner. All my life, the only man that ever took care of me financially was my father. I have always taken care of myself,” she stated in a 2002 interview.

She has been romantically linked since then with French singer Sacha Distel, Miami Vice actor Philip Michael Thomas and The Godfather star Gianni Russo.

Dionne’s a Warm, Wonderful, Giving Person

Warwick’s bankruptcy attorney, Daniel Stolz told a New Jersey television station: “Dionne’s a very warm, wonderful, giving person. She’s been extraordinarily philanthropic throughout her life. Not only has she not accumulated great wealth, but she is now living hounded by the IRS.”

Warwick’s work for good causes has been a major feature of her career. She was one of the first celebrities to become involved in the crusade against HIV and Aids, founding the Washington-based Warwick Foundation in the late 1980s to fund research, healthcare and public education and preaching compassion at a time when Aids was still taboo.

Marie Warwick Biography and Profile

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