Donald's Encyclopedia of Popular Music
(b Edwin Jack Fisher, 10 August 1928, Philadelphia PA; d 22 September 2010, Berkeley CA) Singer. He had an appealing tenor voice and was especially good with show tunes; one of the biggest stars of early '50s with 35 top 40 hits '50-56, 19 in top ten; he continued hitting the Hot 100 until '67. His father was a grocer; he did local amateur shows, sang on the radio in high school, with the Buddy Morrow and Charlie Ventura bands '46; heard by Eddie Cantor at Grossinger's resort in upstate New York, he joined Cantor's radio show '49 and was an instant hit: photos in uniform during military service '52-3 didn't hurt. No. 1 hits '53-4 included 'I'm Walking Behind You', a vocal version of an international instrumental hit from Germany 'Oh! My Pa-Pa' and 'I Need You Now'; 'Any Time', 'Wish You Were Here' and 'Downhearted' were even better but did not reach no. 1. 'Heart' from the musical Damn Yankees was no. 6 '55; the junky 'Dungaree Doll' was no. 7 '55 but the other side also charted: 'Everybody's Got A Home But Me' from Pipe Dream was no. 20, one of his best. His last big hit was 'Cindy, Oh Cindy' at no. 10 '56, just beaten with the song by Vince Martin and the Tarriers at no. 9.
On 'A Man Chases A Girl' (no. 16 '55) Debbie Reynolds sang the tag 'until she catches him' uncredited. They were married, and close friends with Elizabeth Taylor and her husband, larger-than-life producer Mike Todd; when Todd was killed in an air crash '58, Fisher left Reynolds for Taylor, the biggest gossip story of the era. He was later also married to Connie Stevens, and had no. 45 hit '66 with 'Games That Lovers Play'. In the first half of the 1950s Fisher had more chart albums than any other vocalist except Frank Sinatra: four 10-inch LPs in top 10 '52-4, 12-inch I Love You '55; other chart albums included live two-disc At The Winter Garden on Ramrod '63, Eddie Fisher Today on Dot '65; Games That Lovers Play '66 charted back on RCA, People Like You '67 just made it, You Ain't Heard Nothin' Yet didn't. Other '50s LPs on RCA included May I Sing To You? (reissue of a 10-inch album with added songs), As Long As There's Music (reissued '87 in UK); also Young And Foolish on Dot c.'66. He made a new album '96 arranged and conducted by Robert Farnon.
At the end he had been in a wheelchair for some time, and died of complications following a hip operation. He had five children; his daughter with Reynolds, Carrie Fisher, is a successful actress (Star Wars) and author.