Behind the myth
An episode from the series TOO YOUNG TO DIE
In 1969, Karen, barely 19, and Richard Carpenter sign a contract with A&M Records, then one of the major record labels in the USA. Their first single reaches #54 on the US Billboard charts. Shortly after, in the summer of 1970, their ballad “Close to You” is #1. They become the definitive pop superstars of the 70s.
After a concert in 1973, Karen sees photos of herself in an unfavorable dress. She looks fat in it, even if she never really was, and that shock trigger an eating disorder. She becomes anorexic, a condition still unknown to doctors at the time. In 1983, at the age of 32, Karen passes away in her parents' home.
If icons often die from too much drugs or alcohol, Karen died of a terrible deprivation, not only of food but also of love and self-confidence.