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Lady Day

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NEWS
By GLENN McNATT | April 17, 1993
Billie Holiday sang pop music better than anybody else, ever. She was blessed with enormous natural talent and cursed with so many personal problems that one wonders how she managed to accomplish as much as she did. She died in 1957 at the age of 44, having survived everything except the dreadful demons that drove her to destroy herself.Now Lady Day has come back, in a sense, to her home town of Baltimore. She may be seen in Center Stage's current production of "Lady Day at Emerson's Bar & Grill."
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NEWS
By JOHN FRITZE and JOHN FRITZE,SUN REPORTER | July 24, 2006
Somewhere between the tempo-setting finger snaps and the final swoosh of her long, coffee-colored dress, Georgene Fountain, with a steady, soulful voice, brought Lady Day back to Baltimore yesterday. Belting out her Gershwin selections like a star, the Germantown resident took the top prize in yesterday's Billie Holiday Vocal Competition, an annual event tied to Artscape in which 10 singers croon standards recorded by the jazz legend who was raised in Fells Point. Fountain, the last competitor to take the stage at the Meyerhoff Symphony Hall, sang so much like Holiday that Carine Babalola couldn't wait for the final note of "Embraceable You" to clear the air before she stood to applaud.
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FEATURES
By J. Wynn Rousuck and J. Wynn Rousuck,Theater Critic | March 28, 1993
The legend of Billie Holiday has touched the life of director George Faison on three occasions.The first was during his boyhood in Washington, when he was helping his father with his awning business."
ENTERTAINMENT
By RASHOD D. OLLISON and RASHOD D. OLLISON,SUN POP MUSIC CRITIC | November 17, 2005
Placing herself in the 1950s was a bit uncomfortable for Dianne Reeves. The Grammy-winning jazz vocalist appears in Good Night, and Good Luck, the recent George Clooney-directed flick, which takes place during the McCarthy era. Reeves doesn't do any acting in it. She sings, setting the mood with smoky jazz numbers. But transforming into a '50s-style chanteuse a la Dinah Washington wasn't easy for the striking singer whose thick, dark dreadlocks fall past her shoulders. "They put all these locks under a little wig," Reeves says, chuckling.
FEATURES
By Carl Schoettler and Carl Schoettler,Evening Sun Staff | November 6, 1991
"Lady Day: The Many Faces of Billie Holiday," by Robert O'Meally, 207 pages, Arcade Publishing, New York, N.Y., $29.95.IN THE very first sentence of his book, "Lady Day," Robert O'Meally declares Billie Holiday "the greatest jazz singer in history," which may well be true, but O'Meally's declaration will surely irritate partisans of, say, Sarah Vaughan and Ella Fitzgerald.O'Meally's anointment of Holiday as the greatest, in the style of Muhammad Ali, one supposes unhappily, is typical of this book.
NEWS
By JOHN FRITZE and JOHN FRITZE,SUN REPORTER | July 24, 2006
Somewhere between the tempo-setting finger snaps and the final swoosh of her long, coffee-colored dress, Georgene Fountain, with a steady, soulful voice, brought Lady Day back to Baltimore yesterday. Belting out her Gershwin selections like a star, the Germantown resident took the top prize in yesterday's Billie Holiday Vocal Competition, an annual event tied to Artscape in which 10 singers croon standards recorded by the jazz legend who was raised in Fells Point. Fountain, the last competitor to take the stage at the Meyerhoff Symphony Hall, sang so much like Holiday that Carine Babalola couldn't wait for the final note of "Embraceable You" to clear the air before she stood to applaud.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Carl Schoettler and Carl Schoettler,SUN STAFF | April 11, 2002
BILLIE HOLIDAY'S roots run deep in Baltimore. She forged one of the great American singing styles from a childhood lived poor and hard and mean on Durham Street in Fells Point and on Pennsylvania Avenue near North Avenue. She derived her signature song, "God Bless the Child," from a childhood of heart-wrenching experience. "Yes, the strong gets more "While the weak ones fade "Empty pockets don't ever make the grade ... " "Rich relations give "Crust of bread and such "You can help yourself "But don't take too much.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Sandra Crockett and Sandra Crockett,Sun Staff | April 13, 2000
Billie Holiday has been dead for more than four decades, yet in Baltimore she lives on. The. famed jazz singer lives in the memory of her many local fans and in the tribute Baltimore has held in her honor for 10 years. This year's tribute, the 11th annual Mayor's Billie Holiday Vocal Competition, takes place Saturday at Center Stage. Holiday called Baltimore home, so it is fitting that this city celebrate her life, says singer Ruby Glover. It was Glover's idea to honor Lady Day this way. "There was nothing in place that would honor the style of Billie Holiday and keep her memory in front of young musicians," Glover says.
NEWS
By Lawrence Freeny | January 26, 1992
LADY DAY: THE MANY FACES OF BILLIE HOLIDAY.Robert O'Meally.Arcade/Little, Brown.207 pages. $29.95. Accurately introduced as a biographical essay, "Lady Day" delivers a well-planned work of limited length and scope. But it is marred by analysis laden with adulation of the singer, enshrining her on a too-lofty level.Robert O'Meally, tapping numerous sources in composing his five-part essay, says its "central point is that . . . she was able to invent for herself a shining identity as an artist."
NEWS
February 23, 2000
AS WE celebrate the contributions of African-Americans this month, it is a great time to recognize one of the most creative gifts to the world's music -- jazz. This unique musical form was shaped by the combination of the many experiences and traditions of Africans in America and melded from spirituals, work songs and city and delta rhythms. Whether created in joy, pain or hope, jazz provided a new form of expression that changed the way the world listened to music. The city of Baltimore has a special place in the history and creation of jazz.
FEATURES
By Rashod D. Ollison and Rashod D. Ollison,SUN POP MUSIC CRITIC | April 4, 2005
We all know the lady sang the blues. And by numerous accounts, Billie Holiday lived them, too: raped as a girl, a prostitute by age 14, an addict most of her adult life. If we are to believe her many biographers, the artist, to paraphrase author Zora Neale Hurston, seemed to believe that nature had given her a "lowdown dirty deal" and her "feelings were all hurt about it." So all of that pain, all of that bitterness and sorrow dammed up in Holiday's soul came through whenever she stepped before a microphone to sing.
FEATURES
By J. Wynn Rousuck and J. Wynn Rousuck,SUN THEATER CRITIC | October 2, 2003
Washington's Arena Stage recently unveiled its plans to expand and update its theater complex in the Southwest section of the city. The $100 million project will incorporate the existing Fichandler Stage and Kreeger Theater and also include a new 200-seat flexible space called the Cradle Theater, designed to incubate new work. Canadian architect Bing Thom, whose previous designs range from the master plan for the city of Yuxi, China, to the Chan Centre for the Performing Arts in Vancouver, was selected from more than 100 candidates.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Carl Schoettler and Carl Schoettler,SUN STAFF | April 11, 2002
BILLIE HOLIDAY'S roots run deep in Baltimore. She forged one of the great American singing styles from a childhood lived poor and hard and mean on Durham Street in Fells Point and on Pennsylvania Avenue near North Avenue. She derived her signature song, "God Bless the Child," from a childhood of heart-wrenching experience. "Yes, the strong gets more "While the weak ones fade "Empty pockets don't ever make the grade ... " "Rich relations give "Crust of bread and such "You can help yourself "But don't take too much.
FEATURES
By Carl Schoettler and Carl Schoettler,SUN STAFF | June 13, 2000
On a late winter night early in 1939, Billie Holiday stood on stage at New York's CafM-i Society and, with a single pin light illuminating her face, sang a new song called "Strange Fruit." "Southern trees bear a strange fruit, Blood on the leaves and blood at the root, Black body swinging in the Southern breeze, Strange fruit hanging from the poplar trees. Pastoral scene of the gallant South, The bulging eyes and the twisted mouth, Scent of magnolia sweet and fresh, And the sudden smell of burning flesh!
ENTERTAINMENT
By Sandra Crockett and Sandra Crockett,Sun Staff | April 13, 2000
Billie Holiday has been dead for more than four decades, yet in Baltimore she lives on. The. famed jazz singer lives in the memory of her many local fans and in the tribute Baltimore has held in her honor for 10 years. This year's tribute, the 11th annual Mayor's Billie Holiday Vocal Competition, takes place Saturday at Center Stage. Holiday called Baltimore home, so it is fitting that this city celebrate her life, says singer Ruby Glover. It was Glover's idea to honor Lady Day this way. "There was nothing in place that would honor the style of Billie Holiday and keep her memory in front of young musicians," Glover says.
NEWS
February 23, 2000
AS WE celebrate the contributions of African-Americans this month, it is a great time to recognize one of the most creative gifts to the world's music -- jazz. This unique musical form was shaped by the combination of the many experiences and traditions of Africans in America and melded from spirituals, work songs and city and delta rhythms. Whether created in joy, pain or hope, jazz provided a new form of expression that changed the way the world listened to music. The city of Baltimore has a special place in the history and creation of jazz.
NEWS
By Earl Arnett | November 11, 1991
LADY DAY: THE MANY FACES OF BILLIE HOLIDAY. By Robert O'Meally. Arcade Publishing Inc. 207 pages. $29.95. An accompanying VHS videotape sells for $29.95. SHE CALLED herself Billie Holiday. Others called her "Lady Day." Jazz critic Martin Williams, who played a role in the inception of this project, labeled her a great musician and "a great natural actress who had learned to draw on her own feelings and convey them with honest directness to a listener."After 207 pages (and more than 178 photographs and illustrations, a bibliography and notes)
FEATURES
By Carl Schoettler and Carl Schoettler,SUN STAFF | June 13, 2000
On a late winter night early in 1939, Billie Holiday stood on stage at New York's CafM-i Society and, with a single pin light illuminating her face, sang a new song called "Strange Fruit." "Southern trees bear a strange fruit, Blood on the leaves and blood at the root, Black body swinging in the Southern breeze, Strange fruit hanging from the poplar trees. Pastoral scene of the gallant South, The bulging eyes and the twisted mouth, Scent of magnolia sweet and fresh, And the sudden smell of burning flesh!
NEWS
By George F. Will | December 27, 1999
WASHINGTON -- With year MDCCCCLXXXXVIIII (as Roman numerals were used in year M) yielding to year MM, give thanks for Arabic numerals. Consider also the texture of life when the first millennium ended.There was disagreement about dating that end. Some people dated the beginning of the Christian era from the Resurrection, so 1000 was 33 years premature.Others said the beginning of the era was nine months before Christ's birth, on March 25, Lady Day, the day the Angel Gabriel told Mary she would bear a child.
FEATURES
By J. D. Considine and J. D. Considine,Sun Pop Music Critic | April 9, 1994
A lot has changed in the music world since Billie Holiday's time.Jazz, which was her bread and butter, has moved from the forefront of popular music to the sidelines; in its place are sounds and styles unimagined when Lady Day (as Lester Young called her) was singing. In her day, radio ruled the roost; today, it's music video. Even the way music is sold is different, as records -- the medium Holiday knew -- have long since been replaced by cassettes and CDs.Yet her music endures.In 1958, a year before she died, Frank Sinatra said that Holiday was "unquestionably the most important influence on American popular singing in the last 20 years."
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