Billie Holiday: Stormy Weather


Stormy Weather


Billie Holiday (vocals)


Verve Jazz Masters 47: Sings Standards (Polygram 527650)

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Billie Holiday (vocals), Joe Newman (trumpet), Oscar Peterson (piano), Freddie Green (guitar), Ray Brown (bass), Gus Johnson (drums).

Composed by Harold Arlen & Ted Koehler


Recorded: New York, July 27, 1952


Rating: 95/100 (learn more)

Possessing neither the theatricality of Ethel Waters nor the stateliness of Lena Horne, Billie Holiday eschews "Stormy Weather" as a torch song, and instead makes it a saloon song. You might fear that Billie's quarter-to-three, no-one-in-the-place-except-you-and-me barstool confidential would detract from the lyrics; with such a distinctive artist, a mere song risks becoming more about her than about its intended subject. Think again. Nobody ever served "Stormy Weather" better than Lady Day, who affords a whole new appreciation of Ted Koehler's words. Songs are a form of storytelling. And jazz never had a wiser, more believable storyteller than Billie Holiday.

Reviewer: Alan Kurtz

If you liked this track, also check out

Billie Holiday: Strange Fruit
Billie Holiday: Mean to Me
Etta James: Stormy Weather

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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