Tuesday, June 30, 2009

An Ode to Phyllis Linda Hyman

In Loving Memory

July 6, 1949- June 30, 1995

(This ode was written on the day after Phyllis's death)

Your smokey voice helped me through so many rough times. You gave me understanding of love lost and found, you reminded me "What You Won't Do for Love".

I know you must be singing in heaven with the other divas: Bessie, Sara, Billie and Minnie. All sisters taken away too soon by the bitter sweet of life that asks too much and gave too little. It must be like a gathering of
"Old Friends".

Your intense eyes, full lips and voluptuous six-foot Goddess stature left men wanting and dreamy eyed. You had them "Under Your Spell".

Your lyrics reflect both the joy and pain of love. I so wish you had found true love "Somewhere in Your Life Time".

Now you're gone at age 45, just at the peak of realizing your worth and possibilities.
"You Were in the Prime of Your Life".

On June 30, 1995, you chose to removed yourself from this earthly plane. Life got to be too much, you
"Just "Couldn't Take It Anymore".

Missing was a true sister and brother circle to hold and protect you when the going got tough. Someone to insure you got the help and support you needed. Someone to say,
"This Too Shall Pass Away"

You sang such sad songs of love. Always searching for someone to love you, but never really learning to love the person within. "The Answer Was You".

So long Phyllis, we love you and we honor you. " You Refused to Be Lonely". May you now find comfort in the arms of God. As long as we speak your name and play your music your legacy and shining spirit will live on.

* copyright 1996 all rights reserved.

Monday, June 29, 2009

Take the Phyllis Hyman (PH) Triva Quiz

1. What was the name of the neighborhood where Phyllis grew up?

2. In what southern state does PH have ancestral roots?

3. Who is Phyllis named for?

4. PH is from a family of 7. What is her birth order?

5. What is the name of the music teacher that first discovered and cultivated PH's musical talent?

6. What was the name of PH's first boyfriend?

7. Who is the jazz musician that gave PH her first successful recording?/What was the title of the song?

8. What was the name of the band PH started in Miami?

What record label was PH signed with at the time of her death?

10. What female jazz vocalist had the greatest influence on PH?

11.What famous guitarist played with Phyllis in the early days?

True or False - Vocal stylist, Rachelle Ferrel sang backup vocals for PH.

13. What astrological sign was PH born under?

14. Name the song writer that penned the tune "Living All Alone"?

15. Name the 1989 movie where PH played a singer and prostitute?

16. What Steven Spielberg movie was PH considered for a role in?/What character?

17. True or False - PH was offered $100,000 to perform in apartheid South Africa in the 80's and she refused.

18. Name the designer that created PH's signature fashion look?

19. What is the name of PH's former husband?

20. What were the three haunting words found in PH's suicide note?

21. What was the major humanitarian cause that PH contributed her time, talent and resources to?


1) St. Clair Village 2) North Carolina 3) Her father, Phillip Hyman 4) The oldest
5) David Tamburri 6) Richard Wall 7) Norman Connors/"Betcha By Golly Wow
8) The PH Factor 9) P.I.R 10) Nancy Wilson 11) Hiram Bullock 12) True
13) Cancer 14) Cynthia Biggs 15) The Kill Reflex 16) The Color Purple, in the role of Shugg Avery 17) True
18) Cassandra McShepard 19) Larry Alexander 20) "I'm tired". 21) HIV/AIDS

* Primary source: Biography- (Strength of a Woman- Jason A. Michael 2007).