Billie Holiday: Gloomy Sunday

Track

Gloomy Sunday

Artist

Billie Holiday (vocals)

CD

Billie Holiday Greatest Hits (Columbia/Legacy CK 65757)

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Musicians:

Billie Holiday (vocals), Emmett Berry (trumpet), Jimmy Hamilton (clarinet), Hymie Schertzer (alto sax), Babe Russin (tenor sax), Teddy Wilson (piano), Al Casey (guitar), J.C. Heard (drums),

John Williams (bass)

.

Composed by Sam Lewis, Rezs? Seress & László Jávor

.

Recorded: New York, August 7, 1941

Albumcoverbillieholiday-greatesthitscolumbia

Rating: 94/100 (learn more)

Darling, I'd Die Without You, among the hoariest songwriting clichés, was never expressed with greater despondency than in this paean to self-destruction, as Billie Holiday contemplates joining a dead lover. The song's original unrelieved Hungarian pessimism was mitigated by an American stanza that contrived to soften the blow by claiming it was all a dream. It didn't work. The song spawned an urban legend about listeners rendered so melancholic they killed themselves. Figuratively, the casualties included Billie her- self, who committed artistic suicide by signing a long-term contract with Decca Records, which dispatched her on a fruitless quest for the almighty buck. Gloomy Money-day.

Reviewer: Alan Kurtz

If you liked this track, also check out

Billie Holiday: Strange Fruit
Billie Holiday: Mean to Me
Billie Holiday: Me, Myself and I


Related Links

Billie Holiday: Rare and Live by Ted Gioia
The Dozens: Twelve Essential Billie Holiday Performances by Stuart Nicholson
Billie Holiday by Stuart Nicholson (from The Encyclopedia of Jazz Musicians)



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