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Transcript of Billie Holiday
What is Billie Holiday known for?
Billie Holiday is known her for astounding achievements as a jazz singer. Earlier in her career, she began singing at various nightclubs, while changing her name because of her idol, Billie Dove, and her father's surname, Holiday. After getting noticed at one of her performances, her connections, from her father's name, got her a major job working with a band. At the age of 17, she took the place of another singer, who John Hammond, a well-known producer, admired. He appeared at the club where she sang, then offered her to record her debut album in November 1933.
How did Billie Holiday impact the music world?
Billie Holiday's iconic, jazz sound amazed many crowds of people. Her unique style of music made her easy to listen to. She is known for laying down the foundation of today's jazz culture. She overcame the obstacle of the word, "black", and took over the jazz world.
How did her childhood affect her?
Billie Holiday's childhood was comprised of constant moving, and disorganization. Because her mother was a prostitute, she didn't really have a decent role model in her life. Holiday, only 13 at the time, followed in her mother's path. On May 2, 1929, her house was raided, and they were arrested. 5 months later, they were released with Holiday's age ranging at 14 years old.
Billie Holiday's Tragic End
"The woman who wrote Jazz history."
Elenora Fagan, or better know as Billie Holiday, was born on April 7, 1915 in Philadelphia, PA to Sarah Julia Fagan and Clarence Holiday, who did not marry her mother.
Who was Billie Holiday?
As her career took off, she teamed up with a neighbor, who was a tenor player, Kenneth Hollan. In 1931, they performed at multiple clubs like The Grey Dawn, Pod's, and Brooklyn Elk's Club. Her singles ,"Your Mother's Son-in-Law", "Riffin' The Scotch", sold over 5,300 copies when released on November 11, 1933. Many people around her said that she changed their musical persona, and influenced the world of jazz.
Her First Iconic Singles
How can someone learn from Billie Holiday?
From Billie Holiday's life, you could learn to never stop being unique. Because Holiday had a well-known talent, people were attracted to her sound, and craved for more. Producers, and partners were eager to work with her, and make her known to the world.
People who worker closely with Billie Holiday
♪ Kenneth Hollan ~ Her neighor; tenor player
♪ Court Baise ~ Toured with him, and some others. With him, she recorded the singles, "I Can't Get Started", "They Can't Take That Away From Me", and "Swing It Brother, Swing".
♪Artie Shaw ~ Greatly influenced her career. He placed her in an organization that had her to appear next to other jazz singers at the time.
Obstacles she had to overcome
Because of the color of her skin, Holiday was prevented the chance to sing on stage with people of other ethnicity. They told her she could not sit on the bandstand exactly for the reason. When people started to see her talent, they removed that barrier as soon as possible.
In the later years of her life, Holiday struggled with money, and the use of it. Her mother, Sadie Fagan often utilized Holiday's wealth to her advantage. Therefore, Holiday was in debt several times. This poured stress on her shoulders. In the early 1940's, Billie Holiday began her addiction to heroin. Her addiction led to her reduction of singles released. She barely visited the studio, leaving people curious. Holiday still performed in clubs, but her drug use became a problem on set. Her lover, Joe Guy, left her, while she continued to use drugs. On May 16, 1947, she was arrested for possession of drugs, then twice after that. Billie Holiday died July 17, 1959 from liver and heart disease.
After her death, Billie Holiday was awarded in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, along with several music awards. Her hit records included, "Strange Fruit", "Carelessly", and "Lover Man", that were always known for their place on the Billboard's top songs.
By: Danielle Battle