Helen Darling

A former commercial jingle singer, Helen Darling found open arms in Nashville after her country backup vocals impressed hillbilly heavyweight Garth Brooks. Born in Louisiana and raised in Houston, Darling sang from an early age and first recorded with her University of Texas choir. She moved to Chicago after graduation and sang radio jingles during the early '90s, but moved again to Nashville when a friend encouraged her. After making the rounds in Music City and getting occasional work, Darling impressed Garth Brooks enough for him to use her vocals on "The Red Strokes" (from In Pieces). Signed to a contract herself in 1994, Helen Darling released an eponymous album -- with vocal backup from Brooks himself -- for Decca in 1995. ~ John Bush

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