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Lesley Duncan


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Stockton-on-Tees, United Kingdom (1963 – 1986)

Lesley Duncan (12 August 1943 – 12 March 2010) was an English . Pursuing weighty lyrical themes such as environmentalism, motherhood, and politics, Duncan was a mainstay of British radio during the ‘. One of her songs, “Love Song”, has been covered by many artists, among them Elton John, whose cover version featured vocal contributions from Duncan. She was also a prolific session singer, famously providing backing vocals for Pink Floyd’s seminal album, The Dark Side of the Moon. Unfortunately, Duncan suffered from severe stage fright, limiting her commercial viability as a performer.

Lesley Duncan was born in Stockton-on-Tees, a market town in north east England, leaving school at fourteen; she would later reminisce about her childhood troubles in her song, “Wooden Spoon”. At age 19, she and her brother Jimmy were placed on weekly retainers by a music publisher. Within a year, Lesley Duncan had signed with major label EMI, and appeared in the film What a Crazy World. Starting in 1963, Duncan recorded a number of pop singles throughout the ’60s, none of which were able to grab the attention of record buyers at large.

All throughout her career as an active solo performer and beyond, Duncan appeared as a vocalist on numerous recordings by other artists, including Donovan, Ringo Starr, and The Alan Parsons Project. She also appeared on the first original cast recording of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Jesus Christ Superstar. A complete list of Duncan’s contributions has yet to be compiled; in her own words, “it would be easier to list the albums on which not appear.”


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