Originally released by Doubleday in 1956, Harlem Moon Classics celebrates the publication with the fiftieth-anniversary edition of Billie Holiday’s unforgettable and timeless memoir. Updated with an insightful introduction and a revised discography, both written by celebrated music writer David Ritz.
Lady Sings the Blues is the fiercely honest, no-holds-barred autobiography of Billie Holiday, the legendary jazz, swing, and standards singing sensation. Taking the reader on a fast-moving journey from Holiday’s rough-and-tumble Baltimore childhood (where she ran errands at a whorehouse in exchange for the chance to listen to Louis Armstrong and Bessie Smith albums), to her emergence on Harlem’s club scene, to sold-out performances with the Count Basie Orchestra and with Artie Shaw and his band, this revelatory memoir is notable for its trenchant observations on the racism that darkened Billie’s life and the heroin addiction that ended it too soon. We are with her during the mesmerizing debut of “Strange Fruit”; with her as she rubs shoulders with the biggest movie stars and musicians of the day (Bob Hope, Lana Turner, Clark Gable, Benny Goodman, Lester Young, Coleman Hawkins, and more); and with her through the scrapes with Jim Crow, spats with Sarah Vaughan, ignominious jailings, and tragic decline. All of this is told in Holiday’s tart, streetwise style and hip patois that makes it read as if it were written yesterday.
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|Title of eBook: Lady Sings the Blues the 50th Anniversary Edition|
|Release Date: 03-02-2011|
|Allowed Countries (hover)|
|Publisher: Crown Publishing Group|
This eBook download is available in the following formats:
|Parent title||Lady Sings the...|
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Lady Sings the Blues the 50th Anniversary Edition
Some Other Spring
Mom and Pop were just a couple of kids when they got married. He was eighteen, she was sixteen, and I was three.
Mom was working as a maid with a white family. When they found out she was going to have a baby they just threw her out. Pop's family just about had a fit, too, when they heard about it. They were real society folks and they never heard of things like that going on in their part of East Baltimore.
But both kids were poor. And when you're poor, you grow up fast.
It's a wonder my mother didn't end up in the workhouse and me as a foundling. But Sadie Fagan loved me from the time I was just a swift kick in the ribs while she scrubbed floors. She went to the hospital and made a deal with the head woman there. She told them she'd scrub floors and wait on the other bitches laying up there to have their kids so she could pay her way and mine. And she did. Mom was thirteen that Wednesday, April 7, 1915, in Baltimore when I was born.
By the time she worked her way out of hock in the hospital and took me home to her folks, I was so big and smart I could sit up in a carriage. Pop was doing what all the boys did then-peddling papers, running errands, going to school. One day he came along by my carriage, picked me up and started playing with me. His mother saw him and came hollering. She dragged at him and said, "Clarence, stop playing with that baby. Everybody is going to think it's yours."
"But, Mother, it is mine," he'd tell her. When he talked back to his mother like this she would really have a fit. He was still only fifteen and in short pants. He wanted to be a musician and used