You only have to hear a few sultry bars before your mind slips away to an after-hours New York City jazz club and you are mesmerized listening to one of the greatest jazz voices of all time - Billie Holiday.
While April 7, 2015, marks her 100th birthday, Billie's music and signature style are timeless.
"Lady Day" never had any technical training. But the way she sang each word, her rhythm and phrasing, how she could bend notes and play with melodies while working a microphone like no other, are reasons she still has no equal. During her short, tragic life, Billie Holiday created a signature style that music historians say profoundly changed jazz singing forever.
One of the best-selling jazz albums. "Lady in Satin" is a true gem to start or add to a must-have collection of Billie Holiday recordings - for you or someone special.
Her own personal favorite, this album was recorded February 19th - 21st in 1958, with Ray Ellis and his orchestra. Ellis, a well-known record producer and conductor, also wrote all of the arrangements.
"I got to sing with Ray Ellis," Holiday said. "I want this album more than anything else, and I want it to be good."
Billie's last studio album, "Lady in Satin" was released by Columbia Records in June 1958, just shy of a year before she died in July, 1959, at the age of 44.
Columbia / Legacy Records reissued "Lady in Satin" in 1997. This 17-track CD features a remastered recording with four previously unissued alternate takes of "I'm A Fool to Want You.", as well as a booklet telling the story of the recording session in words and beautiful black-and-white photographs.
"Here you have Billie Holiday really stripped down to the minimum. You can hear the slurs, the way she breaks notes, the way she bends even one-syllable words. You can hear her — how she phrases, you can hear the liberty she takes with melodies, how she sings above or behind it. You can hear it better on the earlier records, but what you can't get on the earlier records is this incredible life in the music." - A.B. Spellman, National Endowment of the Arts. August, 2001 NPR interview
Play "Lady in Satin" and you'll slip into a front-and-center seat at that after-hours jazz club just as the lights dim and Billie Holiday reaches for the mic. So listen. Really listen. Lady Day has a lot to say…..like when she sings "You've Changed".
If you like this CD, check out our entire Music collection.
This 17-track CD was re-issued by Legacy Records in September, 1997. The original recording was remastered using 20-bit technology, and four bonus tracks were added.
Reissue producer Phil Shaap found the unused master tape for the stereo version of "The End of A Love Affair", and included a stereo mix of "I'm a Fool To Want You" take that had been used on the mono LP.Lady in Satin was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame in 2000.
The Philadelphia-born Eleanora Fagan Gough changed her name to Billie Holiday to pay homage to film star Billie Dove.Billie Holiday - PBS
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