|There have been several famous redheads on television; Lucille Ball, Ann Margaret, Carol Burnett, Vicki Lawrence and Linda Kaye Henning just to name a few.
And there's Sandi Jensen Griffiths, who delighted fans of the Welk show from 1968 to 1980.
Either as one half of Sandi & Sally, the lead vocal of Sandi, Gail & Mary Lou or as a soloist, her talents, beauty and charisma is timeless.
Sandi was born in Los Angeles on August 1, 1946 as one of five children to Mary & Garth Jensen. Growing up in the San Fernando Valley as a member of the Chruch of Latter Day Saints, she would take a similar path to stardom like fellow Mormons, the Osmonds. At age six, she made her television debut on the Art Linkletter television program, "House Party" and continued to sing throughout her school years, which led to enrolling at Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah as part of the 'Program Bureau' student entertainment troupe.
It was there that she met fellow student Sally Flynn, the two became best friends and singing partners which soon had them focused on singing professionally. After stints as part of a USO group touring in Vietnam, and singing in Las Vegas with Jack Jones, both Sandi & Sally tried out in 1967 for a spot on the Lawrence Welk Show at an open cattle call of 250 performers at the Hollywood Bowl. The Maestro liked the girls, their talents and wholesome looks and after spending the summer season with the music makers at their annual engagement at Harrah's in Lake Tahoe, made their Welk show debut the following January.
From 1968 to 1972, Sandi and Sally were one of the most popular acts on the show and when Sally left, Sandi embarked on a new phase of her career.....as lead vocal for a trio featuring Gail Farrell and Mary Lou Metzger. Their blend of looks and voices worked so well that for the next seven years, became one of the most popular acts in the history of the show, bringing back nostalgic memories of the Andrews Sisters and McGuire Sisters. She also did many solos as well, with the most notable being, "And I Love You So" and "The Way We Were".
Off camera, Sandi married her BYU boyfriend Brent Griffiths in 1969; and they would have a large family which reached a total of seven children and one foster daughter, in later years, she would become a grandmother as well, and as of this time would have eight grandchildren. It was the choice of becoming a full-time mother and housewife that in 1980, Sandi decided to leave the Welk show.
Since then, Sandi still continued to be a presence on television, appearing in both Welk Christmas Reunion specials in 1984 and 1985, hosting numerous wraparounds for repeats of the Welk show on public television, and appearing on the PBS pledge special-Welk reunion event "Milestones and Memories." Her voice can also be heard on the radio on occasion as many of her songs have been broadcast on BYU radio.
Today, she and Brent make their home in Santa Clarita, California; where her husband operates a local carpet business and Sandi is working on her masters degree from BYU. In addition to visiting with their children and grandchildren, they like to travel having visited places like Australia, The Netherlands, Ireland and Central America just to name a few.
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