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Solihull News: Royal record for Althea, 83; SHOWBIZ OAP X-Factor flop cuts tribute to Queen.

Byline: By Leda Reynolds

PEARLY QUEEN... Althea Gaye with Ray Fullard as the Octave Tinkling Twosome.

A GREAT-grandmother from Solihull who found fame on ITV's the X-Factor is hoping to strike the right note with royalty.

Althea Gaye, aged 83, was catapulted to stardom after her performance on the show was panned by judges Simon Cowell, Ozzy Osbourne's wife Sharon and record boss Louis Walsh.

For although she was kicked out of the contest before the next round, Althea and 13 other rejects, went on to record a single, a re-make of Nick Berry's Every Loser Wins which was released in time for Christmas with proceeds going to charity.

Now the octogenarian has cut a disc of her own with a record to celebrate the Queen's birthday.

"I met the Queen in 1977, her silver jubilee, when she came to Solihull's Mell Square and she was lovely," said Althea, who has five great-grandchildren.

"I wrote a song for her 60th birthday and I thought that for her 80th I would add a bit on and make it into a CD.

"It's a lovely song, praising her for the hard work she does and how we appreciate her."

Althea is selling the CDs for pounds 4 with some of the proceeds going to charity.

"Instead of a birthday card, it's a musical greeting called simply The Queen's 80th Birthday Song," said Althea, who lives in Hobs Moat.

"I did one for the Queen Mother's 100th birthday which was also beautiful."

"It was a waltz to capture her twirling around in her kilt."

The 84-year-old is no stranger to the spotlight as she and her musical partner, Ray Fullard, have appeared numerous times on TV singing and dancing as the Octave Tinkling Twosome.

"I'm sure people will love the song and anyone who would like a copy should contact me," she added.

For further details about obtaining a copy of the CD call 0121 743 5835."
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Publication:Birmingham Mail (England)
Date:Jun 21, 2006
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