With the passing of Michael Joseph Jackson, it's easy to contemplate the doom that awaits the child pop star. Susan Cowsill is the living rebuke to such fatalism. She was all of nine years old when her family band, the Cowsills, scored a No. 2 Billboard hit with "The Rain, the Park and Other Things," and all of twelve when she headed off on a solo career. That career is nothing if not well adjusted, guided by a voice that's as round, warm and redolent as peach pie made from scratch. She's remained faithful to her gifts and to her hometown of New Orleans, even after Katrina wiped out her house and possessions and took the life of her brother Barry. But she's more than a survivor; she's a triumphant master of melody.
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