| Share
 

Billie Holiday

Holiday, Billie, 1915–59, American singer, b. Baltimore. Her original name was Eleanora Fagan. She began singing professionally in 1930, and after performing with numerous bands—especially those of Benny Goodman, Teddy Wilson, Count Basie, and Artie Shaw—she embarked in 1940 on a career of solo appearances in nightclubs and theaters. Her highly personal approach to a song, her individual phrasing and intonation, and the often rough but highly emotional quality of her voice soon earned her a supreme position among modern jazz singers. Although she was financially successful, she suffered many personal disasters, complicated by the drug addiction that she could not overcome and that eventually destroyed her career and hastened her death. She was also known as Lady Day.

See her sometimes factually inaccurate autobiography (1956); biographies by D. Clarke (1994) and S. Nicholson (1995); D. Margolick, Strange Fruit (2000).

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

More on Billie Holiday from Infoplease:

  • holiday: meaning and definitions - holiday: Definition and Pronunciation
  • Billie Holiday - Biography of Billie Holiday, The popular jazz singer known as "Lady Day"
  • Billie Holiday - Billie Holiday (Eleanora Fagan) jazz singer Born: 4/7/1915 Birthplace: Baltimore, Maryland Jazz ...
  • Lester Willis Young - Young, Lester Willis Young, Lester Willis, 1909–59, American jazz musician, b. Woodville, ...
  • jazz: Blues - Blues The heart of jazz, the blues is a musical form now standardized as 12 bars, based on the ...

See more Encyclopedia articles on: Music: Popular and Jazz: Biographies

24 X 7

Private Tutor

Click Here for Details
24 x 7 Tutor Availability
Unlimited Online Tutoring
1-on-1 Tutoring
 
Warning: include(Mobile_Detect.php): failed to open stream: No such file or directory in /site/html/template/www.infoplease.com/trailer.php on line 412 Warning: include(): Failed opening 'Mobile_Detect.php' for inclusion (include_path='/site/lib/vendor/pear-pear.php.net/Mail:/site/lib/vendor/pear-pear.php.net/Net_Socket:/site/lib/vendor/pear-pear.php.net/Net_SMTP:.:/site/lib:/site/vendor:/usr/share/pear:/usr/share/php:/site/html') in /site/html/template/www.infoplease.com/trailer.php on line 412