Strange Fruit

Topics: Black people, White people, African American Pages: 4 (1336 words) Published: March 25, 2013
Jazz music has always existed as a voice for black musicians and audiences. The sounds and rhythms are extremely unique and colorful. It certainly changed America in the 1920's with the swing movement and it put jazz on the map. During this time many white people started to be influenced by this infectious music, and started to enjoy it. Many white people also discriminated against blacks and treated them as less than equal. A goal for an artist named Billie Holiday was to make America listen to the cries of a black man, a black man who was just lynched. Jazz music had to be recognized with its roots. Billie Holiday believed Jazz music had to defend the black people. No better way of being heard than through the voice of Holiday. She attempted to fight for black rights through her song “ strange fruit”, a political song that struck a chord for many Americans.

Her original name was Eleanor Fagan, born April 7, 1915. Billy Holiday was an American jazz singer, one of the greatest from the 1930s to the 1950s. Also known as "Lady Day, Holiday first acquired a taste of music listening to her father, who was a traveling musician. She was fortunate not to be deprived of music during the popular jazz age of the 1920's. At the young age of 15 she started listening to jazz. She listened to the popular recordings of trumpet player Louis Armstrong and singer Bessie Smith . She decided to sing and she made her professional singing debut in 1931 at a small Harlem nightclub. She then continued to record for the first time only two years later. The jazz world did not recognize her music until 1935. She toured briefly with the Count Basie and Artie Shaw orchestras before becoming a big nightclub solo attraction in 1940.

Her vocal style is considered to be one of the most original ever achieved; she sang with unique personality and distinguished herself as a professional artist. She never had technical training, and she was still able to create a beautiful and warm round...
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