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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Better appreciated now than in her lifetime, 3 Jun. 2004
By 
Peter Durward Harris "Pete the music fan" (Leicester England) - See all my reviews
(No. 1 Hall OF FAME REVIEWER)    (TOP 50 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: The Lady Sings (4CD) (Audio CD)
Nobody sings the blues quite like Billie Holiday. This boxed set represents the best value for money, not only for the quantity of music and the extensive liner notes, but also for the sound quality and the fact that this contains music recorded for several different record labels (Brunswick, Vocalion, Commodore, Okeh, Columbia, Capitol, Decca) between 1935 and 1949. Billie continued to record great music in the fifties (for Verve, Clef and Norgran) but that music is not represented here.
Billie had plenty of hits on the American pop charts between 1935 and 1938 (when she was with Teddy Wilson), after which she had just four more hits, none of them reaching the top ten. However, the passage of time has added substantially to her credibility as many blues, jazz and R+B singers cite Billie as one of their influences. Her first hit was What a little moonlight can do, a song I first came across via a Crystal Gayle cover. I didn't realize the song's origin at the time but I've heard several versions since. I love them all but Billie's is the definitive version.
Billie's other classic hits included here are These foolish things, A fine romance, The way you look tonight, I can't give you anything but love, I've got my love to keep you warm, This year's kisses, Carelessly (her only number one hit), How could you, Moaning low. Mean to me, Easy living, Me myself and I, Sailboat in the moonlight, Nice work if you can get it, My man, You go to my head, I'm gonna lock my heart, Strange fruit, God bless the child and Trav'lin' light. Some big hits are omitted including Twenty-four hours a day, Who loves you and Pennies from heaven, but I'm not complaining. Some of the songs that Billie is best remembered for didn't chart at all.
Although the hits became rare after 1938, this was not due to the quality of the music. Listen to Billie's versions of such classic standards as I gotta right to sing the blues, Night and day, Body and soul, Let's do it, All of me, Love me or leave me, It's a sin to tell a lie, As time goes by and You're my thrill (to name a few). And, of course, there's the classic That old devil called love, revived by Alison Moyet in the eighties, when it became a UK number two hit for Alison.
If you only buy one collection of Billie's music, make it this one. You might begin by asking yourself if you really want five hours worth of Billie's music - but eventually, you are likely to ask yourself if it's enough.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Life of Lady Day, 3 May 2003
By 
C. R. Williams "rockinhepcat" (UK) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Lady Sings (4CD) (Audio CD)
Blues, Jazz and Big Band Swing! These genders have all been graced with Lady Day' presence and you can find them all on this 4 CD collection from one the most influential female artist in music history!
Billie suffered much in her life, she had a hard childhood and it wasn’t easy to make your mark in the industry back in those days. These hard times seem to be reflected in her music and her vocals can be described as powerful, compassionate, tender & sombre.
This box set is the pride of my collection.
The excellently presented 55 page booklet accompanying the collection gives a good insight into Billie' life and career.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Billie Holiday - The Lady Sings, 1 Feb. 2009
By 
Ms. D. M. Neale "Dizzie Di" (Rochester, Kent) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
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This review is from: The Lady Sings (4CD) (Audio CD)
If you ever wanted to find out where Sinatra learned his phrasing - look no further. What a voice, and what blues singing. Brilliant.
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2 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars What can I say, 12 Jun. 2005
This review is from: The Lady Sings (4CD) (Audio CD)
For anyone who loves her this is a must.
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The Lady Sings (4CD)
The Lady Sings (4CD) by Billie Holiday (Audio CD - 2001)
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