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Available October 2, 2020 4:01 AM UTC
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More than 60 years after her death, Billie Holiday is still considered one of the greatest singers ever; however, her troubled life remains swathed in myth. In the 1970s, journalist Linda Kuehl began audio-taping hundreds of hours of interviews with Holiday’s associates in the jazz world (Count Basie, Sylvia Syms, Billy Eckstein, Tony Bennett, Artie Shaw, John Hammond), bandmates, family, and even the narcotics agent who arrested her as research for a never-completed biography. Via this documentary, these fascinating interviews are publicly presented for the first time and reveal new details about Holiday’s early life, the turbulent touring, her targeting by authorities, her sexuality, and her approach to performing. A must-see for music aficionados, the film presents a precious radio interview with the Lady herself as well as film clips of her remarkable performances (including collaborations with Louis Armstrong and Lester Young).—Cornelius Moore

  • Year
  • Runtime
    96 min
  • Language
  • Country
  • Premiere
    Washington, DC Premiere
  • Director
    James Erskine