20 Feb 2011
Billie Holiday is the best
Billie Holiday - Fine And Mellow
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This song originally came out as the reverse side to her 1939 recording of her most famous song, "Strange Fruit", which spoke clearly about racial hatred and the atrocities that this provoked in the south of the United States, then and indeed afterwards.
Although the later pictures of her can show the effects of time, and the life she led, I fnd her just as beautiful, if not more so, than when she was younger (see right and in the video). When you hear how her voice evolves from the earliest recordings, with that clear-as-a-bell tone, to the later ones with the more husky sound and the often slurred words, you literally feel those traces left by life on this woman. But no other singer really matches her constantly changing rhythm, her phrasing that can lend different senses to the same text, and the sheer emotion that comes through in her best interpretations.
Lady Day for ever, through the night.