by: John Chilton
publisher: Da Capo Press, Inc., New York
ISBN number: 0-306-80363-1
WHAT THE COVER READS:
'A well-balanced picture of her best and worst qualities - the genius of her performance and the unfortunate circumstances of her personal life - and a tactful dispelling of the myth surrounding her career... This is the first important book-length study of her life and recordings.' -Library Journal
Anyone who has ever heard a Billie Holiday Record knows the sound of her voice - sad, sexy, always relaxed but securly aware of the beat. Conveying a poignancy that cut to the heart of a song, she redeemed even trivial material with her impeccable sense of dramatic phrasing and time. The well-known tale of her lifelong batttle with drugs has obscured the artistry that has made her one of the most revered singers of the 20th century. Everyone from Frank Sinatra, who in the 1950s called her "unquestionably the most important influence on American popular singing in the last twenty years," to Ella Fitzgerald and Sarah Vaughan has recognized the singularity of her interpretations. The racism that she found at every turn, whether in Artie Shaw's band or in the heart of the south, immortalized in the chilling song "Strange Fruit," cannot be overlooked in her biography. Jazz historian John Chilton has told the story of her short, tragic, influential career with restraint, correcting many of the more sensationalist tales she wrote about herself in Lady Sings the Blues. Buck Clayton, who knew Billie in the Basie band during the '30s, has written a warm and personal foreword tothis fascinating biography of a great American artist.
John Chilton has written about jazz for several decades. He is the author of Who's Who of Jazz (now in its fourth edition) and co-author of Louis: The Louis Armstrong Story, both published in paperback by Da Capo Press.
This book is identical to BILLIE'S BLUES - The True Story of the Immortal Billie Holiday, just without the pictures...