Phoebe Snow, who grew up in Teaneck and lived for many years in Fort Lee, was a one-of-a-kind singer, capable of both stunning power and breathtaking subtlety. She had big hits with “Poetry Man” and her “Gone at Last” collaboration with Paul Simon, both in 1975, but though her time as a mainstream star was short — in part because she chose to spent much of her time caring for her daughter Valerie, who was born with severe brain damage — she remained an electrifying performer and an accomplished recording artist for several more decades.
Valerie died in 2007, and Phoebe Snow died in 2011, at the age of 60, after suffering a cerebral hemorrhage.
Below is a great recording of hers that has never gotten a lot of attention: Her cover of Bob Dylan’s “I Believe in You” — which she sometimes dedicated to Valerie when she performed it live — from her 1981 album Rock Away.
New Jersey celebrated its 350th birthday in 2014. And in the 350 Jersey Songs series, we marked the occasion by posting 350 songs — one a day, from September 2014 to September 2015 — that have something to do with the state, its musical history, or both. To see the entire list, click here.