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Billie Holiday: 16 Most Requested Songs

Track List

>Miss Brown to You
>If You Were Mine
>These Foolish Things
>Way You Look Tonight, The
>Pennies from Heaven
>I Can't Give You Anything But Love
>I've Got My Love to Keep Me Warm
>Why Was I Born?
>Easy Living
>My Man
>I'm Gonna Lock My Heart (And Throw Away the Key)
>Body and Soul
>Gloomy Sunday
>God Bless the Child
>I'm a Fool to Want You

Album Notes

Personnel includes: Billie Holiday (vocals); Edgar Sampson (alto saxophone, clarinet); Carl Frye, Johnny Hodges (alto saxophone); Vido Musso (tenor saxophone, clarinet); Chu Berry, Babe Russin, Ben Webster, Lester Young (tenor saxophone); Harry Carney (baritone saxophone, clarinet); Buck Clayton, Charlie Shavers, Cootie Williams, Roy Eldridge, Bernie Glow (trumpet); Benny Morton, Urbie Green (trombone); Buster Bailey, Benny Goodman, Jimmy Hamilton (clarinet); Billy Kyle, Teddy Wilson, Hank Jones (piano); John Truehart, Dave Barbour, Lawrence Lucie, Allan Reuss, Barry Galbraith (guitar); John Kirby, John Williams, Milt Hinton, Walter Page, Grachan Moncur (bass); Jo Jones, Cozy Cole, Hal West, J.C. Heard, Osie Johnson, Gene Krupa (drums); Ray Ellis.

Compilation producer: Didier C. Deutsch.

Recorded between 1935 and 1958. Includes liner notes by Arnold Jay Smith.

Digitally remastered by Chris Herles (Sony Music Studios, New York, New York).

This is part of the Columbia 16 Most Requested Songs series.

This well--documented and interestingly notated collection of earlier Holiday material includes the enjoyably weird detail of how high each of these tunes went on the charts and how long each lasted there. It's actually a fine reminder that musicians like Holliday and her stellar bandmates were once real live popular musicians, playing nightclubs, selling records, and probably too busy making a living to wonder how their prewar recordings would eventually stackup against their postwar work. For Holiday is one of those musicians, much like her foil Lester Young, whose efforts seem to fall into such categories, and of these 16 MOST REQUESTED SONGS, all but one fall into the prewar category. While the image for many people is of Holiday the drug--ravaged diva, struggling through the sheer pain of existence to cough up one more world--weary performance, her early work displays a clarity, freshness and flexibility that dovetails perfectly with the musicians around her. And Holiday was fortunate enough to be matched with cream of the swing era; these recordings bristle with first--rate musicians, including Teddy Wilson, Benny Goodman, Harry Carney, Johnny Hodges, Ben Webster, Buck Clayton, Lester Young, and the Basie rhythm section.


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