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Happy Birthday to the incomparable Lady Day, Billie Holiday (April 7, 1915 - July 17, 1959). She was an American jazz singer with a career spanning nearly thirty years. Nicknamed "Lady Day" by her friend and music partner Lester , Holiday had a seminal influence on jazz music and pop singing. Her vocal style, strongly inspired by jazz instrumentalists, pioneered a new way of manipulating phrasing and tempo. She was known for her stirring vocal delivery and improvisational skills.
Holiday would win 23 posthumous Grammys. She was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame in 1973 and received several Esquire Magazine awards during her lifetime. Other awards include the Ertegun Jazz Hall of Fame, RockandRollHallofFame, and the ASCAP Jazz Wall of Fame. In 1985, a statue of Billie Holiday was erected in Balitmore, Mayland, that was completed in 1993 with additional panels of images inspired by her seminal song "Strange Fruit". In 2019, Chirlane McCray announced that New York City would build a statue honoring Holiday near Queens Borough Hall.
Some of Holiday's most most noteworthy hits: the popular jazz standard "Summertime" sold well and was listed on the pop charts of the time at number 12, the first time the jazz standard charted. Only Billy Stewart's R&B version of "Summertime" reached a higher chart placement than Holiday's, charting at number 10 thirty years later in 1966
Holiday had 16 best selling songs in 1937, making the year her most commercially successful. It was in this year that Holiday scored her sole number one hit as a featured vocalist on the available pop charts of the 1930s, "Carelessly". The hit "I've Got My Love to Keep Me Warm", was also recorded by Ray Noble, Glen Gray and Fred Astaire whose rendering was a best seller for weeks. Holiday's version ranked 6 on the year-end single chart available for 1937.
In 1939, Holiday recorded her biggest selling record, "Strange Fruit" for Commodore."God Bless the ", which went on to sell over a million copies, ranked number 3 on Billboard's year-end top songs of 1941. BillieHoliday StrangeFruit GodBlesstheChild LadySingstheBlues Singer Jazz Pop