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Verve Jazz Masters, Vol. 47: Billie Holiday Sings Standards

Billie Holiday

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Reseña de álbum

Of Verve's countless number of Billie Holiday samplers, this one — which is actually a second helping from the Verve Jazz Masters series — is as good as any of them artistically. Like many of its cousins on the shelves, this one takes in the whole cross-section of Holiday's recordings for Norman Granz from an exuberant 1945 JATP concert all the way to her last poignant sessions with the Ray Ellis string orchestra in 1959. Unlike them, this one does not contain songs with which Holiday is inextricably tied, but all of the well-worn standards are given the inimitable Holiday stamp, often in league with many of Granz's legendary soloists. Of course, this is the most troubling period for Holiday scholars, for her voice was going downhill fast in the '50s, yet one has to admit that her Verve recordings often pack an emotional wallop that eclipses most of the earlier ones. A few random highlights: the JATP "All of Me" and "Body and Soul" from the mid-'40s, with Holiday in fresh voice and a whole bunch of star horns wailing in tangled contrapuntal splendor underneath; and a "When It's Sleepy Time Down South" from the Ray Ellis sessions where the combination of Holiday's broken-down voice and exquisite phrasing will break your heart. Verve's thorough discographical entries, here and in the entire Jazz Masters series, are exemplary for what is, after all, an inexpensive sampler for newcomers to jazz. ~ Richard S. Ginell, Rovi


Nacido(a): 07 de abril de 1915 en Baltimore, MD

Género: Jazz

Años de actividad: '30s, '40s, '50s

The first popular jazz singer to move audiences with the intense, personal feeling of classic blues, Billie Holiday changed the art of American pop vocals forever. More than a half-century after her death, it's difficult to believe that prior to her emergence, jazz and pop singers were tied to the Tin Pan Alley tradition and rarely personalized their songs; only blues singers like Bessie Smith and Ma Rainey actually gave the impression they had lived through what they were singing. Billie Holiday's...
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