It's a sad Sunday Morning Music for me today, because yesterday I learned that Judith Durham, lead singer of The Seekers during their heyday in the 1960's, died on Friday. Her voice was extraordinary, but so was her life in general, in so many ways.
I grew up with The Seekers' music, and it's been an important strand of my musical memories and tastes ever since. A couple of decades ago, a compendium of every single Seekers song was released in a five-CD boxed set, and I bought it at once. It remains a treasured part of my music library.
In memory of Judith Durham and The Seekers, here's a random selection of my favorites among their songs, in roughly chronological order. Note how, even when she's singing harmony rather than lead, Judith's voice is an essential part of the songs. Her soaring tones "completed" the male voices of her band-mates, and tied them together into a harmonious whole.
Judith used that last song as the title of her autobiography, written in cooperation with Graham Simpson and published in 2004.
Judith's husband, Ron Edgeworth, died of motor neurone disease in 1994. She worked tirelessly to support sufferers from that disease, and to encourage further medical research in that field. There were many other strands to her life, some of which are covered in this obituary in the Sydney Morning Herald.
I feel a personal sense of loss at the news of her death. May she rest in peace.