Monday, April 25, 2011

Happy Birthday, Ella

Ella Fitzgerald was born today in Newport News, Virginia, in 1917. Recording more than 200 albums, many still available - or available again on cd - The First Lady of Song was one of the most influential jazz singers ever. Her voice spanned three octaves and she had a legendary purity of tone and phrasing, and a tremendous improvisational ability, especially in scat. I grew up listening to her (she's one of my father's favorite singers), and one of my favorite albums is the wonderful Complete Ella Fitzgerald & Louis Armstrong - Ella & Louis, Ella & Louis Again, and Porgy and Bess.

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