The Andrews Sisters were a prolific and hugely successful close harmony singing group of the swing and boogie-woogie eras, consisting of three actual sisters: LaVerne, Maxene and Patty – LaVerne Sophia, contralto and redhead (July 6, 1911 – May 8, 1967); Maxene Angelyn, soprano and brunette (January 3, 1916 – October 21, 1995); and Patricia Marie "Patty" Andrews, mezzo-soprano, lead singer, and blonde (born February 16, 1918). Their harmonies and songs are still influential today, and have been covered by entertainers such as Bette Midler, the Puppini Sisters and Christina Aguilera. Throughout their long career, the sisters sold well over 75 million records (the last official count released by MCA Records in the mid-1970s). The group was inducted into the Vocal Group Hall of Fame in 1998. Their hit "Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy" can be considered an early example of rhythm and blues or jump blues.
The sisters were born in Minnesota to a Greek immigrant father and a Norwegian American mother, Olga "Ollie" (née Sollie) Andrews (1886–1948) and Peter Andreas(proper probable Greek form of name Petros Andreou), who took the name of Andrews (1884–1949).
Patty, the youngest and the lead singer of the group, was only seven when the group was formed, and just 12 when they won first prize at a talent contest at the local Orpheum Theatre in Minneapolis, where LaVerne played piano accompaniment for the silent film showings in exchange for free dancing lessons for herself and her sisters. Once the sisters found fame and settled in California, their parents lived with them in a Brentwood estate in Los Angeles until their deaths. Several cousins from Minnesota followed them west. The sisters returned to Minneapolis at least once a year to visit family and friends and/or to perform.