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Billie Holiday: The Life and Legacy of a Jazz Legend

Born Eleonora Fagen in Philadelphia on this day in 1915, Billie Holiday rose to become one of the most innovative and influential vocal stylists of the 20th Century.

Following a difficult childhood, Holiday was heard singing in a Harlem club by renowned producer John Hammond when she was 17. Making her recording debut at 18 with Benny Goodman, she went on to major career success in the 40’s.

Despite chronic challenges with drugs and alcohol, ‘Lady Day’ received four posthumous Grammy Awards and is considered a legend among American singers and audiences.

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