It’s not just today that big, black-rimmed glasses are strangely cool. They were cool in the 1950s, too.
This photo, taken later in Cole’s short life, captures the energy in Cole’s eyes.
For a while, Cole’s notoriety as a performer earned him a spot on television. Unfortunately, his variety show was cut after only 13 months due to lack of support from racist advertisers.
This beautiful painting shows Cole at his piano.
While we usually see him sitting in front of a piano, here he’s at the mike.
Cole and his trio played jazz together for years before Cole moved to a solo pop act.
The trio’s recording career was successful and is now considered classic; Cole’s popularity in the mainstream, however, did not come until he left the trio.
A 1994 U.S. Postage Stamp honored Cole. A letter cost 29 cents to send back then.