Billie Holiday

~ Person

Legal name: Eleanora Fagan

Wikipedia

Eleanora Fagan (April 7, 1915 – July 17, 1959), professionally known as Billie Holiday, was an American jazz musician and singer-songwriter with a career spanning nearly thirty years. Nicknamed "Lady Day" by her friend and music partner Lester Young, Holiday had a seminal influence on jazz music and pop singing. Her vocal style, strongly inspired by jazz instrumentalists, pioneered a new way of manipulating phrasing and tempo. Holiday was known for her vocal delivery and improvisational skills, which made up for her limited range and lack of formal music education. While there were other jazz singers with equal talent, Billie Holiday had a voice that captured the attention of her audience.

After a turbulent childhood, Holiday began singing in nightclubs around Harlem. After being heard by producer John Hammond, who commended her voice, Holiday was signed to Brunswick Records in 1935. Collaborations with Teddy Wilson yielded the hit "What a Little Moonlight Can Do", which would later become a jazz standard. Throughout the 1930s and 1940s, Holiday booked mainstream success with labels such as Columbia Records and Decca Records. By the late 1940s, however, Holiday was beset with legal troubles and drug abuse. After a short prison sentence, Holiday performed a sold-out concert at Carnegie Hall. However, due to her drug and alcohol problems, her reputation deteriorated.

Though she was a successful concert performer throughout the 1950s with two further sold-out shows at Carnegie Hall, Holiday's bad health, coupled with a string of abusive relationships and ongoing drug and alcohol abuse, caused her voice to wither. Her final recordings were met with mixed reaction to her damaged voice, but were mild commercial successes. Her final album, Lady in Satin, was released in 1958. Holiday died of cirrhosis of the liver in 1959. A posthumous album, Last Recording, was released following her death.

Much of Holiday's material has been rereleased since her death, and she is considered a legendary performer with an ongoing influence on American music. Holiday is the recipient of four Grammy awards, all of them posthumous awards for Best Historical Album. Furthermore, Holiday herself was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame in 1973. Lady Sings the Blues, a film centered on Holiday's life, starring Diana Ross, was released in 1972. She is the primary character in the play and later film "Lady Day At Emerson's Bar and Grill" The role was originated by Reenie Upchurch in 1986 and played by Audra McDonald on Broadway (winning a Tony Award) and in the film.

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Discography

Album

Year Title Artist RatingReleases
1978 Great Vocalists of the Big Band Era Various Artists 1
1989 Jazz Club Vocal Various Artists 2 1
1989 The Sound of Jazz Various Artists 5 2
1989 Welcome to the Club Various Artists 1
1990 C'est si bon Louis Armstrong 3
1992 Divas of Jazz Various Artists 1
1992 Sentimental Journey Various Artists 1
1995 Swing Out Sisters Various Artists 1
1996 Best of the Blues Various Artists 1
1996 Jazz & Big Band. Jazz Me Blues Various Artists 1
1997 On Holiday Tony Bennett 1
1997 Ross Porter's After Hours With Verve Various Artists 1
1997 The Ladies of Jazz & Blues Various Artists 1
1998 George Gershwin: 'S Wonderful - The Great Decca Songbook Various Artists 1
1998 A Century of Glory George Gershwin 1
2000 Great Women of Song Various Artists 1
2001 Jazz Masters (Legendary Archive & Live Recordings) Various Artists 1
2001 So Delightful Various Artists 1
2001 The Saxophone Player Gerry Mulligan 1
2002 Make Time for Love Various Artists 1
2002 Classic Jazz: Jazz for Lovers Various Artists 1
2004 Stray Cats Ball: No Dogs Allowed Various Artists 1
2005 Another Great Tomato Blues Package Various Artists 1
2005 Ladies in Love Various Artists 1
2006 Claude Challe Presents Just Good Music Selected by Jean-Marc Challe Claude Challe 1
2006 The Ultimate Vocal Collection (The Ladies) Various Artists 1
2007 The Golden Years of Jazz Volume 9 Various Artists 1
2007 Great American Romantic Standards - I'm All For You Various Artists 1
2008 Jazz for Lovers, Volume 01 Various Artists 1
2009 Uncut: London Pride - 15 Capital Music Moments Various Artists 1
2009 Riceboy Sleeps Jónsi & Alex 2.5 8
2011 Bar Jazz Various Artists 1
2011 Great Ladies of Jazz Various Artists 1
2011 Jazz Divas, The Very Best Of Various Artists 1
2011 Lady Jazz [Disc 1] Various Artists 1
2012 Essential Christmas: Original Hits By The Original Artists Various Artists 1
2012 Winter Wonderland Various Artists 1
2013 The Best Versions of Summer Time Various Artists 1
2013 La noche más larga Buika 2
2013 American Jazz Standards Various Artists 1
2015 Mo' Electro Swing Republic Swing Republic 5 1
25 Blues 'N' Soul Greats Volume 3 Various Artists 1
50's Here's to the Ladies Various Artists 1
American Songbook Series: Frank Loesser Various Artists 1
Capital Gold Jazz Legends Various Artists 1
Dinner Party Jazz Various Artists 1
Jazz Legends Various Artists 1
Solid Gone Blues Various Artists 1
Soul Sensations Various Artists 1
That's Amore Various Artists 1
The Very Best Of - CD1 - From Past... Various Artists 1
Tribute to Norah Jones Various Artists 1

Album + Compilation

Year Title Artist RatingReleases
1956 Columbia Basic Library of Great Jazz Various Artists 1
1984 American Popular Song Various Artists 1
1986 CBS Jazz Masterpieces - Sampler, Volume 1 Various Artists 1
1986 Columbia Jazz Masterpieces - Sampler, Volume One Various Artists 1
1986 Low Lights & Trick Mirrors Various Artists 1
1987 Compact Jazz: The Sampler Various Artists 1
1987 CBS Jazz Masterpieces: Sampler, Volume 2 Various Artists 1
1987 Hollywood Party Various Artists 1
1987 Prime All-Time-Hits: Jazz and Blues Club, Volume 1 Various Artists 1
1987 Prime All-Time-Hits: Jazz and Blues Club, Volume 2 Various Artists 1
1987 Prime All-Time-Hits: Jazz and Blues Club, Volume 3 Various Artists 1
1987 Prime All-Time-Hits: Jazz and Blues Club, Volume 4 Various Artists 1
1987 The Smithsonian Collection of Classic Jazz, Volume 2 Various Artists 1
1988 A Tribute to George Gershwin by the Giants of Jazz Various Artists 1
1988 CBS Jazz Masterpieces - Sampler, Volume 4 Various Artists 1
1988 Irving Berlin Always Various Artists 1
1988 Irving Berlin: A Hundred Years Irving Berlin 1
1988 Lean On Me Various Artists 1
1988 The George Gershwin Collection Various Artists 1
1988 Unforgettable Various Artists 1
1989 The Jazz Masters: 27 Classic Performances From the Columbia Jazz Masterpieces Series Various Artists 1
1989 Have Yourself a Jazzy Little Christmas Various Artists 1
1989 All That Jazz Various Artists 1
1989 Jazz Autour De Minuit Various Artists 1
1989 Jazz Greats Various Artists 1
1989 Jazzfeelings, Volume 1 Various Artists 1
1989 Jazzfeelings, Volume 3 Various Artists 1
1989 Les plus grands moments du Jazz Various Artists 2
1989 Night Life Various Artists 1
1989 Originals 20 Crooners Various Artists 1
1989 Prime All-Time-Hits: Jazz and Blues Club, Volume 6 Various Artists 1
1989 Satin Dolls Various Artists 1
1989 The Giants of Jazz Various Artists 1
1989 The Great American Composers: Cole Porter Various Artists 1
1989 The Great American Composers: George & Ira Gershwin Various Artists 1
1989 The Great Tomato Blues Package Various Artists 1
1990 Hollywood Collection Various Artists 1
1990 Schmuse-Jazz Various Artists 2
1990 The Great American Composers: Jerome Kern Various Artists 1
1990 The Great American Composers: Rodgers and Hart Various Artists 1
1990 Your Hit Parade: 1941 Various Artists 1
1991 75 All Time Jazz Sessions Various Artists 1
1991 A Jazz Hour Special: The Sampler Various Artists 1
1991 Legends of Jazz Various Artists 2
1991 The Great American Composers: Frank Loesser Various Artists 1
1991 The Great American Composers: Johnny Mercer Various Artists 1
1991 Verve Jazz Box Various Artists 1
1992 Night and Day: The Cole Porter Songbook Various Artists 1

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