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Annette was on her third and final audition for The Mickey Mouse Club when Walt Disney asked her to sing something for him.  His request shocked Annette and she nervously muttered "I'm sorry, Mr. Disney, but I don't sing".  After some reassuring, Annette sang a song she had learned from listening to the radio.  When she finished, she was thanked and.....well, I guess you could say the rest is history. 
 
Despite the success she found in the music industry, Annette has never been able to express much confidence when talking about her abilities in this area of her career. As with her unlikely start in show business, her career as a recording artist just happened, and couldn't have been more a surprise to her as it was to everyone else. 
 
Annette's solo music career began in 1958 while her serial Annette, was airing on The Mickey Mouse Club.  During a hayride scene in one of the episodes, Annette sang what was meant to be a hokey ballad called How Will I Know My Love.  After the episode aired, thousands of people called the studio asking where they could buy the record.  It was then Mr. Disney approached Annette and announced he was signing her to a recording contract.  With panic in her voice Annette responded, "But Mr. Disney, I don't sing. You know I don't sing".  Walt saw the ability in her that she was unable to see herself.  He arranged for her to work with the legendary Tutti Camarata, a famous musician, arranger, and record producer who in the past  had worked with a number of greats such as Frank Sinatra, Bing Crosby, and Ella Fitzgerald.  He also brought in The Sherman Brothers as composers, who would come to call Annette "their lucky star" due to the success they found in working with her. 
 
Following the successful release of How Will I Know My Love, it was decided that Annette's next record would be aimed toward the Rock and Roll market, which at the time was practically uncharted territory for a female artist.  Tall Paul, her second single was recorded and released by March of 1959. It reached number seven on the Billboard chart.  With the rock and roll music overpowering her soft voice during the recording sessions of this song, the Shermans and Tutti developed the now famous "Annette Sound", a method of double tracking Annette's voice and adding echos. This process has since been used by some of the biggest names in the music industry, even today. In 1959 Annette began what would become a long time professional relationship with Dick Clark when she made her first appearance on American Bandstand singing Tall Paul.  She also joined Dick Clarks Caravan of Stars that year, a bus concert tour across the country featuring some of the biggest names in the business.
 
Annette released fourteen solo albums and contributed to a number of other record and soundtrack albums from 1959 - 1967.  Her music reflects the style and trends of the time with songs about innocent fun, innocent romance, surfing, sun, and creating the next big dance craze.  Annette had ten hit singles with two of those making Billboards top ten.  She worked closely with, then boyfriend, Paul Anka on her highest selling album; Annette Sings Anka and in turn was the inspriation behind Paul's hit songs Puppy Love and Put Your Head on my Shoulder
 
Annette went back into the studio in 1984 to record The Annette Funicello Country Album which included  Promised Land, a song she and her husband, Glen Holt wrote together telling the story of her and her family's journey from New York to California.  Following the success of her movie Back to the Beach, Annette joined Frankie Avalon on a nostalgic national concert tour which even took them to Las Vegas where they played a limited engagement at The Golden Nugget Hotel and Casino.



 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 


 
 
ANNETTECONNECTION.COM is the official website of Annette Funicello and The Annette Funicello Research Fund for Neurological Diseases.