Billie Holiday was born Eleanora Fagan in 1915. Raised in Baltimore, Maryland, she began singing in jazz nightclubs as a teenager. Eventually moving to New York with her mother, Holiday never learned to read music and had no professional training, however her prodigious talent quickly found her performing in Harlem's best jazz clubs.
Discovered in 1933 by producer John Hammond, eighteen-year-old Holiday went from singing in Harlem to recording her debut on a Benny Goodman session. She partnered with saxophonist Lester Young in 1936. Young, who gained popularity as a member of Count Basie's orchestra, would be the source of Holiday's famous nickname, "Lady Day."
Released in 1958 through Columbia Records, Lady in Satin was the eleventh studio album from Holiday. Featuring classical arrangements from bandleader Ray Ellis, Holiday's voice is supported by a 40-piece orchestra. The record's reception was mixed due to the deteriorating quality of the singer's voice from years of alcohol and substance abuse. Holiday's upper register was gone and she had developed a noticeable rasp. However, despite the critical reviews and perception, Lady in Satin was still inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame in 2000.
Lady in Satin is our Jazz, Soul, & Blues Record of the Month for May. You'll be hooked from the very first lyrics 'til the end of album closer "I'll Be Around". This imported reissue is pressed on limited-edition 180-gram solid blue vinyl. It's been remastered and each LP features its own unique sticker!
B.T.R.C. - Rudy Newman