1. Bassey was born in 1937, and grew up in Cardiff Bay, Wales.
2. She is of Welsh, English, and Nigerian descent. Here she is in 1955, the year her career began to take off.
3. Bassey’s first hit, “The Banana Boat Song” (1957)
4. Shirley in 1959, “preparing” a meal in her fancy new London home. She had her first child, Sharon, at age 17 in 1954
5. Bassey looking ridiculously glamorous in 1960. She’s only 23-years-old here.
6. In this 1960 portrait, Bassey shows off a pretty freaking amazing champagne colored gown.
7. 1962: Here, Bassey models a dress she might wear for President Kennedy’s inauguration anniversary celebrations, where she was invited to sing.
8. Shirley in 1964 with her second child, Samantha. (Sadly, Samantha died at age 21.)
9. Singing “Goldfinger” in 1965.
10. Performing at the London Palladium in 1965.
11. Shirley in 1967, the coolest grown-up lady to have stuffed animals ever.
12. Shirley Bassey’s cover of the Beatles’ “Something,” (1970) became a huge U.K. hit.
13. Another career milestone: “Diamonds Are Forever,” the theme song of the 1971 “James Bond” movie.
14. Performing on German TV in 1972.
15. And of course, “Goldfinger.” Here she is performing the song live at Royal Albert Hall in 1974 and FOR REAL, THIS WILL MAKE YOU SHIVER.
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