Famed Jazz Singer
Billie Holiday Bio Details
Also known as
Date of birth
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA
Date of death:
17 Jul 1959
Place of death
New York City, New York, USA
Cause of death
Created her stage name by combining the Christian name of her favourite actress, Billie Dove, with the surname of her father.
Discovered by Music Producer John Hammond when she was 18 and singing in a Harlem jazz club. He said of her, "She was the first girl singer I'd come across who actually sang like an improvising jazz genius." She released her first track in 1933 and released 38 charting singles during her career.
Appeared in the film New Orleans with Louis Armstrong in 1947.
Awarded the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award in 1987 almost 30 years after her death.
Never learned how to read music.
Battled with subatnce and alcohol absue throughout her life. She was first arrested in 1947 for narcotics possession and spent just over a year in federal prison as a result. Even at the time of her death she had been placed under arrest while ill in bed for illegal posession of narcotics.
Considered one of the best Jazz singers of all time. Following her death, more than 3000 people turned out at her funeral.
Billie Holiday Family
Billie Holiday's parents:
Billie Holiday's current partners:
Billie Holiday's former partners:
Billie Holiday had a relationship with John Levy