|Date of Birth||June 12, 1932|
|Origin||Battleboro, North Carolina, USA|
Mercer was born in Battleboro, North Carolina. Her parents were tobacco sharecroppers and she was the first of nine children. She began singing in church as a teenager, but when she was fifteen years old, she ran away from her home to start a singing career in New York City.
Mercer then moved to Paris where she sang in bars and other venues. While in Paris, she met publisher Maurice Girodias, who hired her to sing at the Blues Bar. After some time, she ended up running the place.
After some time, she returned to the US and started an acting career appearing in films like Dirty Harry and in shows like Kung Fu, ER, and The Shield.
Mercer died in October 29, 2008 after complications from a stroke.