Like so many of the best and brightest, Billie Holiday was taken from us far too soon. Happily she left us with an impressive catalog of beautiful music. I found a clip from her only major motion picture roll in 1947 and I thought that was worth posting. By all accounts it’s a pretty terrible movie except for Louis Armstrong and Billie Holiday. Billie is beautiful and her voice is strong and clear but her sleepy eyes and unsteady gait seem to hint at the coming storm in her personal life. She was arrested later that year for narcotics possession. Here’s Lady Day singing “Farewell to Storyville” from the movie “New Orleans.”
Here’s Billy Eckstine’s very fine version of “Everything I Have Is Yours.” It’s from 1947 as well and it was one of his biggest hits.
I really should learn how to make a power point slide show video so I can post my own versions of songs when there isn’t already one on You Tube. I’d have loved to have done a side by side comparison of these two versions. It’s fascinating how the feeling of a piece can change from one artist to another. When Billie sings the song it’s a sweet wistful torch song like Frank says. When Billy sings it, it’s all about sex appeal. You can just hear the shower of underpants and hotel keys hitting the stage as he croons the last note!