Rosemary Clooney

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Rosemary Clooney was a popular American actor and cabaret singer during the 1950s, earning a No. 1 hit with ‘Come on-My House.’ George Clooney, a well-known Hollywood actor, is her nephew. The singer began her singing career as a duo with her sister Betty Clooney in bands and on the radio before deciding to go solo. She also had several other chart-topping singles, including ‘This Ole House’, ‘Hey There’, ‘Half as Much’, ‘Tenderly’, “Mambo Italiano’, and ‘Botch-a-Me’. Though she achieved success as a jazz vocalist, her career was doomed in the 1960s due to issues such as her drug addiction and severe depression. However, in the 1970s, when one of her former co-stars Bing Crossby invited her to perform with him at a show commemorating his fiftieth year in show business, her career received a much-needed boost. When Rosemary’s sister Betty died at the age of 45 from a brain aneurysm, she organized a memorial for her late sister in conjunction with the Betty Clooney Center in Long Beach, California, for all brain-injured young adults. She performed there annually to raise money for the foundation. Continue reading to learn more about her life and work.

Childhood & Adolescence

Rosemary Clooney was born on 23 May 1928 in Maysville, Kentucky to Andrew Joseph Clooney and Marie Frances Clooney. Her mother was of English and Irish ancestry, whereas her father was German and Irish.

Rosemary was one of her parents’ five children and was raised in Maysville. Both she and her sister Betty sang during their grandfather’s mayoral campaign. By chance, her grandfather won the election three times.

The singer had a difficult childhood due to her father’s alcoholism and frequent absences, while her mother was frequently required to travel for work. As a result, Rosemary and her siblings were frequently required to stay with relatives.

Rosemary was only three years old when she made her stage debut at the ‘Russell Theater’ on ‘When Your Hair Has Turned to Silver’. She was raised as a Catholic and attended ‘Our Lady of Mercy’ High School in Cincinnati.

Career of Rosemerry

Rosemary began her singing career with Betty, her sister, on a Cincinnati radio show. The two sisters joined Tony Pastor’s big band orchestra in 1946 and toured with the band for several years.

In 1949, the aspiring singer relocated to New York to pursue a solo career following Betty’s retirement. Rosemary achieved her first major success two years later, after signing with ‘Columbia Records’, with the Number 1 hit, ‘Come On-a My House’.

Soon after, she had additional chart-topping singles such as ‘Tenderly,’ ‘The Ole House,’ and ‘Hey There,’ which cemented her reputation as a singer.

Rosemary also appeared in several feature films during this time period, including 1954’s ‘White Christmas’ and Bing Crosby’s ‘The Stars Are Singing’. She also had a self-titled television show called ‘The Rosemary Clooney Show’ in the late 1950s.

The popular singer’s career suffered a setback in the late 1960s as a result of personal issues, which included a failed marriage to Jose Ferrar, a failed love affair, and the assassination of Robert F. Kennedy, a close friend. During this time period, she also abused sleeping pills and tranquilizers.

She suffered a mental breakdown and it took years for her to recover, but she gradually rebuilt her singing career, beginning with small lounges and clubs.

In the mid-1970s, she joined her former co-star Bing Crosby on his farewell tour, which was a major boost for her comeback, and later signed a recording contract with the ‘Concord Jazz’ label.

Significant Works of Rosemerry

Rosemary’s career began slowly, but in early 1951, she recorded her first chart-topping single, “Beautiful Brown Eyes,” which eventually sold around 400,000 copies. Her royalty rates were increased from 3% to 5%, and she was guaranteed an annual income of $250,000 for the next five years.

Clooney’s professional career took a turn for the worse after she sang ‘Come On-a My House,’ a nonsense song written by Ross Bagdasarian and William Sarroyan. Though Rosemary predicted the song would fail to chart, it became her biggest hit, selling over a million copies.

Awards and Accomplishments

Despite the fact that several of her songs received ‘Grammy’ nominations, she did not win. Clooney, on the other hand, received the ‘Lifetime Achievement Grammy Award’ in 2002.

Rosemary had also graced the cover of ‘Downbeat,’ one of the most renowned jazz publications, and ‘The Wall Street Journal’ dubbed her a ‘Pop icon.’

Clooney received numerous accolades during her lengthy and illustrious singing career, including an Emmy nomination for a guest appearance on NBC’s ‘ER’.

Personal History and Legacies

Rosemary Clooney married Jose Ferrar twice, a 16-year-old movie star. Clooney married him for the first time on 1 June 1953, and the couple had five children together.

Despite the fact that their first marriage ended in divorce, the couple remarried in 1964. The marriage, however, did not last and they divorced three years later.

In 1996, she married Dante Di Paolo, a dancer with whom she had collaborated on two of her films, and they remained married until her death. Her personal life improved significantly as a result of this marriage.

Clooney died in Beverly Hills, California, on 29th June 2002, at the age of 74, following complications from lung cancer.

Estimated Net Worth

Rosemary Clooney net worth: Rosemary Clooney was an American singer and actress who died in 2002 with a net worth of $20 million.

Rosemary Clooney was born in May 1928 in Maysville, Kentucky and died in June 2002. She was a vocalist in the pop and jazz genres who released numerous albums and singles.


When Rosemary married her second husband Dante Di Paolo in 1997, George Clooney, one of Hollywood’s most famous actors and her nephew, did not attend because he did not want to detract from her aunt’s special day.