A Singer's Guide to
1870 - 1980


The Scarecrow Press, Inc.
Metuchen, N.J., & London 1993



b. April 18, 1887, Mankato, MN; d. Jan.17, 1974, New York, NY

Clara Edwards was a singer, an accompanist, and a composer of over 100 songs (1) - often to her own words. While studying singing in Vienna, she married a physician, who died shortly after their daughter was born. Edwards made a few European concert tours but, in 1914, returned to America. A single mother in New York City, she composed her songs out of fmancial necessity. Quickly taken up by publishers, programmed by such stars as Lily Pons and John Charles Thomas, and performed on the popular radio show, the Telephone Hour, they became immensely successful. Distinguished for their tasteful and truly lovely melodies, Edwards's songs are some of the best of the ballad style concert song. The early With the Wind and the Rain in Her Hair was considered 'popular' and even played at the top of the Hit Parade in 1940. By the Bend in the River (to words of Bernhard Haig, a pen name of the composer) and Into the Night are deservedly still in print. The Fishers Widow was another favorite. By the Bend in the River is recorded by Maryanne Telese on Premier (002).

AmerGroves, Baker.
Brant, Leroy V. and Clara Edwards. "The Heart of the Song: From a Conference with Clara Edwards," Etude, January, 1948.

(1) This is the figure given in the Etude interview. Baker and ArnerGroves, probably referring to her published songs, gives the number as being over 50.