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December 06 , 2010

Always for Judy

Witness to the Joy and Genius of Judy Garland


Joan Beck Coulson was lucky enough to meet Judy Garland at the party after the last show at the Dominion in November 1957. She greeted Judy at the Press Reception in 1960 and invited to attend recording sessions (London Sessions) with her. Later in the summer, she witnessed the two one-woman shows that Judy did at the Palladium (preclude to Carnegie Hall) and was present during the making of "I Could Go on Singing" in 1962. Coulson moved to Los Angeles and found she was working at CBS at the same time as Judy was making her CBS Television Series 1963/64. She attended the party after the first show and gave Judy the best wishes of the British Fan Club.

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Coulson dropped out of the Judy World and brought up two performing arts children.She went back to her studies and completed an Organizational Behavior BS at USF (1983). BA in Anthrology (1987) and MA in Social Sciences at San Jose State University (1989). A visit to the Judy garland Museum in Grand Rapids, Minnesota in 1997 brough her back into the Judy World. She met many young people who had discovered Judy and renewed her friendship with the London based friends.

In her book, Always for Judy: Witness to the Joy and Genius of Judy Garland, Coulson shares her memories of being with Judy at the many concerts she attended.She also considers Judy's life from the lens of an anthropologist.She looks at Judy's life as vaudevillian, and the damage done to her by being forced to audition as a child. Her MGM years are broken into three segments: teenage years making fifteen movies in five years, including the Wizard of Oz, the glam years and marriage to David Rose and recordings for Decca Records and marriage to Minnelli, Birth of daughter Liza and final movies, including Easter Parade.In 1951 Judy starts her concert years, television shows and recording with Capital Records. She marries Sid Luft and has two children, Lorna and Joe. In 1961, Judy signs with Creative Management Associates and makes several movies and concerts, including the Carnegie Hall show, which was recorded. Coulson follows Judy's life through the final difficult years to the appearances at the "Talk of the Town: and marriage to Mickey Deans. Judy died in London on June 22, 1969 from an accidental incautious overdose of barbiturates. She is resting at Ferncliff Mausoleum in New. York. Her music and magic lives on. Since she has left us she has acquired more and more admirers from the young and old.

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