With sisters Jean Ann and Mary, Peggy sang through her childhood in North Dakota. After graduating high school (and overcoming the Great Depression), the three oldest sisters were determined to bring their talents to the world and moved to New York City, sure that fame and fortune awaited.
Their exceptional abilities gained attention and culminated in employment with the Tommy Dorsey Orchestra, billed as The Sentimentalists. Chart-topping hits “Chicago” and “On the Sunny Side of the Street” were highlights of their work with Dorsey.
Following the war Peg moved out to Los Angeles to work in radio and records and met her husband of 42 years, Wilbur Schwartz, himself a gifted woodwind player. Their careers blossomed in tandem with this epoch of great entertainment: Hollywood and its film, radio, television, and record industries were the beneficiaries of the very best musicians and singers the world had to offer.
Peg’s preternatural skills at the mic were in demand as a first-call session singer – recording artists as diverse as Frank Sinatra, Nat Cole, Judy Garland, Ray Charles, and Stan Freberg all employed her. Choral leaders Jud Conlon, Earl Brown, Jimmy Joyce, and Johnny Mann made her a part of an elite cadre of choral singers for television shows such as The Dinah Shore Chevy Show, The Sonny and Cher Comedy Hour, and The Carol Burnett Show, along with singing the main titles for Oscar-winning pictures like Breakfast at Tiffany’s, Days of Wine and Roses, and The Sandpiper. Jingles, record dates, soundtracks, shows – Peg did them all with the deceptive ease and good humor that characterizes the very best who were always ready when the red light went on.