Watch Four Live Performances By Harlem’s Billie Holiday

Billie_HolidayBillie Holiday’s name has been in the news lately for some reasons that remind us of the tragedies she sang about and those she endured. First, there was the story of the rather appallingly tone-deaf PR firm who thought one of Holiday’s most well-known recordings, “Strange Fruit”—a song about lynching—would make a great name for their brand. Continue Reading →

Billie Holiday Sings ‘Strange Fruit,’ Harlem, 1939 (audio)

Billie_HolidayStrange Fruit” is a song performed most famously by Billie Holiday (lived in Harlem during this time), who first sang and recorded it in 1939. Written by the teacher Abel Meeropol as a poem, it exposed American racism, particularly the lynching of African Americans. Continue Reading →