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Billie Holiday (Eleanora Fagan Gough, Philadelphia, PA, April 7, 1915 – New York City, NY, July 17, 1959) was an American jazz singer and songwriter.
Nicknamed Lady Day by her loyal friend and musical partner Lester Young, Holiday was a highly original influence on jazz and pop singing. Her vocal style, strongly inspired by jazz instrumentalists, pioneered a new way of manipulating phrasing and tempo. Above all, she was admired for her deeply personal and intimate approach to singing. Read more on Last.fm
2002 20th Century Masters: Best Of Billie Holiday (The Millennium Collection)
2002 Billie Holiday for Lovers
2002 Singin' the Blues
2000 The Commodore Master Takes
2000 Ken Burns Jazz: Billie Holiday
2000 Billie Holiday: Ken Burns's Jazz
1999 V Disc: A Musical Contribution By America's Best (For Our Armed Forces Overseas)
1997 The Complete Commodore Recordings
1996 Love Songs: Billie Holiday
1995 Jazz Masters 47: Billie Holiday Sings Standards
1995 Billie Holiday's Greatest Hits
1994 God Bless the Child
1994 Jazz 'Round Midnight
1992 Billie's Best
1992 The Complete Billie Holiday On Verve 1945-1959
1991 Lady In Autumn: The Best Of The Verve Years
1991 The Complete Decca Recordings
1990 The Billie Holiday Songbook
1988 Billie's Blues
1980 Billie, Ella, Lena, Sarah
1961 The Essential Billie Holiday: Carnegie Hall Concert Recorded Live
1959 Billie Holiday
1959 Last Recording
1958 Lady In Satin (The Centennial Edition)
1958 All or Nothing At All
1958 The Blues Are Brewin'
1958 Stay With Me
1958 Lady In Satin
1958 At Newport (Live)
1958 Lover Man
1958 At Newport (Expanded Edition)
1957 Body and Soul
1957 Songs for Distingué Lovers
1957 Billie Holiday
1956 Velvet Mood
1956 The Lady Sings
1955 Music for Torching
1954 Billie Holiday At Jazz At the Philharmonic (Live)
1945 Lady Day: The Complete Billie Holiday On Columbia 1933-1944, Vol. 8
1940 Lady Day: The Complete Billie Holiday On Columbia 1933-1944, Vol. 10
1940 Lady Day: The Complete Billie Holiday On Columbia 1933-1944, Vol. 9
1939 Lady Day: The Complete Billie Holiday On Columbia 1933-1944, Vol. 6
1938 Lady Day: The Complete Billie Holiday On Columbia 1933-1944, Vol. 5
1937 Lady Day: The Complete Billie Holiday On Columbia 1933-1944, Vol. 4
1937 A Musical Romance
1937 Lady Day: The Complete Billie Holiday On Columbia 1933-1944, Vol. 3
1936 Lady Day: The Complete Billie Holiday On Columbia 1933-1944, Vol. 7
1936 Lady Day: The Complete Billie Holiday On Columbia 1933-1944, Vol. 2
1935 Lady Day: The Complete Billie Holiday On Columbia (1933-1944)
1933 Lady Day: The Complete Billie Holiday On Columbia 1933-1944, Vol. 1
Dec 14, 2018
To lean on a piano and sing jazz like Billie Holiday is to truly live.
Nov 16, 2018
62 years ago, minutes before curtain call and nervous for one of the biggest shows of her life, Lady Day is comforted by her husband. The concert would be an autobiographical tour through her astounding life, from scrubbing stairs in Baltimore to selling out Carnegie Hall. Between each song, harrowing passages of both suffering and redemption were read aloud from her just-released book "Lady Sings The Blues". The songs were mostly of her own writing, and if they weren't, they may as well have been, because no one sang them like her. "Billie was on top, undeniably the best and most honest jazz singer alive." - Nat Henthoff.
Listen to the concert now: https://open.spotify.com/album/344uspLK9fvcnmMRz89y94?si=b8MC-PKzQDG5FZf3u_e9YA
Nov 12, 2018
60 years ago today in 1958 #LadyDay played L'Olympia Music Hall in #Paris and gave this sumptuous performance of "Trav'lin' Light" for eternity to cherish. At one point she looks into the camera and you feel as though you know her as a friend.
We look back now and delight in the wisdom of her aging voice and the poignancy of her phrasing. Today we honor and adore those qualities in our elder musical heroes such as Aretha Franklin, Leonard Cohen, Mavis Staples or Tony Bennett. Hard to believe the rest of her French dates were viciously cancelled by the promoter. Despite this she would stay on in Paris and play a small club for a percentage of the door. Billie never backed down.
Nov 08, 2018
Today in 1956, during a TV interview, Lady Day was asked to close her eyes and recite the words to her composition "Don't Explain" like a poet would, without singing. If the lyrics never gave you goosebumps before, they will now. Listen for yourself. https://https://youtu.be/JDl1fkwsDXM?t=163
Hush now, don't explain
O know you raise Cain
I'm glad you're back, don't explain
Quiet, don't explain
You mixed with some dame
Skip that lipstick
You know that I love you
And what love endures
All my thoughts of you
For I'm so completely yours
Cry to hear folks chatter
And I know you cheat
But Right or wrong, don't matter
When you're with me, sweet
Hush now, don't explain
You're my joy and pain
My life's yours, love
Oct 29, 2018
A new publicity shot May 1945, just in time for Billie’s epic run at Club Downbeat, NYC. “Billie Holiday, the thrush, is breaking all 52nd Street records,” lauds critic Walter Winchell.
Oct 15, 2018
In 1957, by varying accounts, photographer Paul J. Hoeffler took this shot either at the Ridge Crest Inn, Rochester New York or Pep's Musical Bar in Philadelphia. Either way, Lady Day is epic!
Oct 05, 2018
Let's put aside her musical and cultural accomplishments for a moment and just say "Wow, look at that gorgeous necklace!" #LadyDay had taste… Forever perfectly in style.
Sep 28, 2018
Sep 14, 2018
She was brave and bold… and invented the modern singing style. #BillieHoliday #LadyDay
Sep 11, 2018
Sep 04, 2018
"I'll be loving you always
With a love that's true always
When the things you plan
Need a helping hand
I will understand always, always
Days may not be fair always
That's when I'll be there always
Not for just an hour
Not for just a day
Not for just a year,
Always from Billie's 1958 album Stay With Me.
Aug 17, 2018
Aug 08, 2018
Today in 1944 Lady Day signs with Decca Records and from the very first recording session came her eternal "Lover Man", a tune that would forever be all Billie's.
Someday we'll meet
And you'll dry all my tears
Then whisper sweet
Little things in my ear
Hugging and a kissing
Oh, what we've been missing
Lover man, oh, where can you be
Aug 07, 2018
Billie Holiday. Photo by Murray Kormann
Aug 04, 2018
"Just thinking of you
And the way you look tonight..."
Jul 20, 2018
As beautiful as the music she gave us. This photo shoot of #BillieHoliday was right around the time she first recorded her superb renditions of “These Foolish Things“ “Summertime“ “A Fine Romance“ "The Way You Look Tonight“ and her own classic composition “Billie’s Blues“.
Photo by Robin Carson c.1936
Jul 18, 2018
#BillieHoliday lives on forever in our hearts. Her swing, her soul, her courage and the tidal wave of emotions she brought to us are not dissipated fully 61 years after her passing. (April 7, 1915 – July 17, 1959)
Jul 17, 2018
Jul 17, 2018
For 8 weeks, 7 days a week, 5 shows daily, 40 minute sets, every 3 hours! Count Basie Orchestra, #LadyDay & Key Largo set a Warner Strand Theater box office record, opening today in 1948. But as Billie put it, "You can go dressing room crazy." #LaurenBacall #HumphreyBogart #TCMParty
Jul 05, 2018
Jul 04, 2018
One of the greatest music partnerships in all history, and yet so few photos of them together. Here they are: #BillieHoliday & #LesterYoung. What is left for us but their indelible music?
Also pictured: (l-r) Coleman Hawkins, Gerry Mulligan at The Sound of Jazz TV shoot, New York, December 8, 1957.
Jun 28, 2018
Look what we found! #LadyDay promo photo from the early 40’s by Robin Carson for her agency Associated Booking. From the E. Azalia Hackley Collection at the #detroitpubliclibrary
Jun 28, 2018
"Billie Holiday will forever be the queen of slow-burn jazz singing, but here she stretches and impresses within that spine-tingling realm." Billie's Deep Cuts playlist courtesy of Apple Music
Apr 15, 2018
Join us in welcoming Nina Simone into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame today!
Apr 07, 2018
Billie Holiday (born Eleanora Fagan) entered this world on April 7th 1915 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. In her short 44 years with us here on earth, she blessed us with a devotion to family, friends and food, a deeply abiding love for her pets and revealed an emotional reach to music that still lights the way for lovers and the broken-hearted everywhere, 103 years later! Happy birthday Lady Day! 🎂