Performance

Cindy Birdsong

Cindy Birdsong (born Cynthia Ann Birdsong on December 15, 1939, in Camden, New Jersey) is an African-American singer. Birdsong was a founding member of Patti LaBelle & the Blue Belles, a group she performed with from its 1960 inception until 1967 when she was hired by Berry Gordy to replace Florence Ballard in The Supremes. Just as Birdsong joined the group, the Supremes were in the process of changing their name to “Diana Ross & the Supremes“, acknowledging Ross as the group’s focal point. Initially, Cindy was greeted with a chilly response by longtime Supremes fans, but, over the course of the past three decades, has become a favorite and cherished member of the group for most fans.

Ross left the Supremes for a solo career in 1970, at which point Jean Terrell was brought in as the new lead singer. Birdsong continued to perform with the Supremes until 1972 when she married and became pregnant with her first child. After a brief retirement, Birdsong returned to the Supremes in late 1973 and remained until she quit the act in 1976.

The Supremes (Cindy Birdsong, Diana Ross, and Mary Wilson), 1968

After leaving the Supremes, Birdsong worked at UCLA Medical Center under her married name and then went to work for Suzanne de Passe at Motown Records. In 1983 Cindy joined fellow former Supremes Mary Wilson and Diana Ross in a one-off reunion of the award-winning television special celebrating twenty-five years of Motown Records; Motown 25 Yesterday, Today, and Forever. In 1987, Birdsong returned to singing and released the single, “Dancing Room” on Hi-Hat Records. In 2000, she reunited with the Blue Belles for the first time in 33 years. Other songs were demoed, but none were released. She is currently a minister in the Los Angeles area.

In 2004, Ms. Birdsong joined former Supreme Mary Wilson and Destiny’s Child singer Kelly Rowland to perform a medley of Supreme hits for the Motown 45 anniversary television special. Birdsong has recently finished her memoir.

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