Singer-songwriters are some of the most beloved figures in the music industry for a reason: while some stars may require an arsenal of professionals to assemble something resembling a coherent hit, certain people are talented enough to translate their endless energy into the written word. One of these talented individuals is María Grever, the Mexican singer-songwriter who’s the subject of today’s Google Doodle. Born in central Mexico at the end of the 19th century, Grever’s musical skill was evident enough at a young age that she found herself being tutored by the likes of Debussy and Lehár. She grew up to write countless songs that were eventually covered by luminaries such as Aretha Franklin and Frank Sinatra.
Grever’s style involved blending the energy of tango music with traditional folk rhythms, producing songs like “Júrame” (“Promise, Love,” 1926) and “What a Difference a Day Makes,” originally known in Spanish as “Cuando Vuelva a Tu Lado,” (1934). During her career, she also penned background music for Paramount Pictures and 20th Century Fox films at the beginning of the 20th century, a gig that showcased her all-around mastery of her medium.
Additionally, Grever’s talent was such that it expanded around her to include others: in 1959, the jazz singer Dinah Washington won a Grammy for her rendition of Grever’s song “What a Difference a Day Makes.” While Grever never achieved the level of fame that’s usually reserved for performers, her skill and dexterity prove that great talent can come from anywhere, and that it only needs to be nourished and encouraged in order for it to flourish.