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It took place in Hollywood on March 8, 1950. Gordon Jenkins arranged and directed. Billie had written "God Bless The Child" with Arthur Herzog, Jr. in 1941, and made a superior recording of it for Vocalion the same year. There is a story behind the song: Billie's mother had always wanted to run a restaurant, and Billie gave her much of the money that she needed to start and maintain it. One day, Billie found herself short of cash, so she showed up at "Mom Holiday's" to ask her mother for some. "Mom turned me down flat." Billie recalled in Lady Sings The Blues. "She wouldn't give me a cent. She was mad with me and I was mad with her. We exchanged a few words.

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Tall, sensually exotic, with a swatch of gardenias in her hair, she sang with her head tilted jauntily back and her fingers snapping to the beat; audiences unfailingly responded with hushed reverence.Her early small-group recordings have been reissued in several boxed sets under the general title of "Billie Holiday: The Golden Years"; her best later work is to be found in "The First Verve Sessions" recorded in 1952 and 1954 with a Jazz at the Philharmonic group of all-stars that included trumpeter Charlie Shavers, tenor saxophonist Flip Phillips, pianist Oscar Peterson, and guitarist Barney Kessel.On March 6, 2000, Holiday was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in the Early Influences category.

Strange Fruit by Billie Holiday- Lynching in the ..

"Lover Man" had been written for Billie by a young soldier named Jimmy Davis. (Jimmy Sherman and "Ram" Ramirez shared credit on the song's 1941 copyright, but in her autobiography, Billie insists that Davis had done most or all of the writing.) Billie's masterful performance made this the definitive recording of a song that would become not only a featured part of her stage repertoire, but a standard. "No More," which Camarata and lyricist Bob Russell had written for Billie, completed the date, and in 1952, when Billie was asked to select her three favorites among her own recordings, she chose "No More," "Fine And Mellow" (recorded for Commodore in 1939), and "Gloomy Sunday" (recorded for Columbia's OKeh label in 1941).

Billie Holiday was a Inspirational Jazz singer who died due to heart failure n 1959

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Another tune always associated with her was "Gloomy Sunday," which was expressive of such deep despair that it was for a time barred from the airwaves (the contention was that it was inducive to suicide).By the mid-1940s Billie had been arrested many times for narcotics violations, and after one arrest in 1947, at her own request, was placed for a year and a day in a federal rehabilitation center at Alderson, West Virginia.

Billie Holidays Albums What is prevalent message included on Billie Holiday songs

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Listen to "Lover Man," "Don't Explain," "Good Morning Heartache," "Easy Living," or "My Man." Here is Billie Holiday at the peak of her voice and artistry. Her ability to communicate through song is simply magical.

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Holiday quit Cafe Society in August 1939, but she took Strange Fruit with her and carried it like an unexploded bomb. In Washington DC, a local newspaper wondered whether it might actually provoke a new wave of lynchings. At New York's Birdland, the promoter confiscated customers' cigarettes, lest their firefly glow distract from the spotlight's intensity. When some promoters ordered her not to sing it, Holiday added a clause to her contract guaranteeing her the option. Not that she always exercised that right. "I only do it for people who might understand and appreciate it," she told radio DJ Daddy-O Daylie. "This is not a 'June-Moon-Croon-Tune'."

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Billie described her approach in the book simply - "I don't think I'm singing. I feel like I am playing a horn. I try to improvise like Les Young, like Louis Armstrong, or someone else I admire. What comes out is what I feel. I hate straight singing. I have to change a tune to my own way of doing it. That's all I know." In her autobiography Lady Sings The Blues, Billie added that "I always wanted Bessie's big sound and Pop's feeling. [She refers, of course, to Bessie Smith and Louis Armstrong.] Young kids always ask me what my style is derived from and how it evolved and all that. What can I tell them? If you find a tune and it's got something to do with you, you don't have to evolve anything. You just feel it, and when you sing it other people can feel something too. With me, it's got nothing to do with working or arranging or rehearsing. Give me a song I can feel, and it's never work."