Sunday Jazz Lunch: Billie Holiday At Carnegie Hall with Vimala Rowe

Sunday Jazz Lunch: Billie Holiday At Carnegie Hall with Vimala Rowe

Line-up: VIMALA ROWE vocals; ALEX WEBB Musical Director, piano; DENYS BAPTISTE tenor sax, clarinet; SUE RICHARDSON trumpet; NEVILLE MALCOLM bass; ROMARNA CAMPBELL drums

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Vimala Rowe leads this tribute to Lady Day, inspired by the legendary 1956 Carnegie Hall concert at which Billie’s music was accompanied by extracts from her autobiography Lady Sings The Blues.  With a band led by pianist / MD Alex Webb, Rowe gives her unique interpretations of the Lady Day catalogue while quoting from her extraordinary life story.  The show includes many of the most well-known Holiday songs, ranging – as did the Carnegie Hall concert – from the optimism of her 1930s work (What A Little Moonlight Can Do, Fine And Mellow) through her 1940s Torch songs (My Man, I Cover The Waterfront) to her self-penned classics Don’t Explain and Lady Sings The Blues – and many more.  Holiday’s memoir Lady Sings The Blues remains a unique document.  The New York Herald Tribune called it, ‘One of the most candid self-portraits ever painted on a typewriter’, and it retains the power to shock and intrigue more than half a century later.

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