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Lady Sings the Blues the 50th Anniversary Editionby William Dufty
Synopses & Reviews
Originally released by Doubleday in 1956, Harlem Moon Classics celebrates the publication with the fiftieth-anniversary edition of Billie Holiday's unforgettable and timeless memoir.Updated with an insightful introduction and a revised discography, both written by celebrated music writer David Ritz.
Lady Sings the Blues is the fiercely honest, no-holds-barred autobiographyof Billie Holiday, the legendary jazz, swing, and standards singing sensation. Taking the reader on a fast-moving journey from Holiday's rough-and-tumble Baltimore childhood (where she ran errands at a whorehousein exchange for the chance to listen to Louis Armstrong and Bessie Smith albums), to her emergence on Harlem's club scene, to sold-out performances with the Count Basie Orchestra and with Artie Shaw and his band, this revelatory memoir is notable for its trenchant observations on the racism that darkened Billie's life and the heroin addiction that ended it too soon. We are with her during the mesmerizing debut ofStrange Fruit; with her as she rubs shoulders with the biggest movie stars and musicians of the day (Bob Hope, Lana Turner, Clark Gable, Benny Goodman, Lester Young, Coleman Hawkins, and more); andwith her through the scrapes with Jim Crow, spats with Sarah Vaughan, ignominious jailings, and tragic decline. All of this is told in Holiday's tart, streetwise style and hip patois that makes it read as if itwere written yesterday.
In a fiftieth anniversary edition of Holiday's unforgettable memoir, the legendary singer describes her early childhood in an East Baltimore ghetto, her career as an internationally acclaimed jazz vocalist, and her years in bondage to a drug habit. Reprint. 15,000 first printing.
About the Author
Eleanora Fagan, who later took the name BILLIE HOLIDAY, was born April 7, 1915, and died when she was just forty-four,on July 17, 1959. Coauthor WILLIAM DUFTY (1916–2002) was a music enthusiast, freelance writer for the New York Post, and Gloria Swanson’s last husband.
Table of Contents
cd song selections : Fine and mellow / Deborah Cox — Them there eyes / Erin Boheme and Gerald Albright — Strange fruit / Kenneth "Babyface" Edmonds — Good morning heartache Renee Olstead — Body and soul / Patti Austin, Dave Koz, Luis Conte — Ain't nobody's business if I do / A.J. Croce — Do nothin' 'til you hear from me / Boz Scaggs — You've changed / Shelby Lynne — Lady sings the blues / Rocco DeLuca — God bless the child / instrumental: Herman Jackson, III, piano.
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