Monday, July 11, 2011


This album hasn't gotten too much hype - I actually just noticed A Tribute To Billie Holiday on iTunes last week. I'm not an expert on her or her era of music.  But I do have lots of her music, and I think her singing was so beautiful, while also being sad.  I think she's one of the greatest singers of all time.  Sinatra was supposedly influenced by her, and I know he sang a lot of the same songs.  I like Billie better.

I downloaded three of the songs.  Shelby Lynne, who is seriously underrated, does "You Changed," and it's excellent. I also checked out Esperanza Spalding's "I'll Look Around" which I love.  I was intrigued by the idea of Babyface singing "Strange Fruit."  While Babyface participated in the "Vote For Change" tour some years ago, he generally hasn't been the most political artist, so I thought this was a very unusual choice for him.  It's cool that he tried it, but I don't think it really works.  No disrespect, it was an interesting choice and a tough song to take on.

Those are the songs that I checked out, and two out of three ain't bad, as the man says.  Boz Scaggs and Deborah Cox are other singers on the album.  I haven't heard their songs yet.  I know a lot of people "hate" on tribute albums. I like the idea of them, and I often enjoy the final results.  My favorite thing about them is the idea that they may lead people to check out the original artist and if some new music fans get turned on to Lady Day because of this collection, then mission accomplished.  

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