23 October 1921, Lincoln, Nebraska, USA. Bennett studied piano and singing, with the intention of becoming an opera singer. She was attracted to jazz when her mother introduced her to the music of Duke Ellington and Count Basie. She joined Georgie Aulds band, then worked with big bands led by Claude Thornhill, Alvino Rey and Charlie Ventura, where she replaced Jackie Cain and Roy Kral, and was also briefly with Stan Kenton and Woody Herman. In the 50s, she played and recorded with her then husband, André Previn, and also appeared at the Monterey Jazz Festival. In 1975 she married Mundell Lowe at a ceremony held at the Monterey festival. Later, although semi-retired for some years, she returned to singing in the USA and UK. Initially concerned with singing jazz, during her time with Ventura Bennett took an increasing interest in the lyrics of the songs she sang, eventually developing into a very good, all-round and musically intelligent song stylist.