A Centennial Homage to Billie Holiday from Cassandra Wilson

“Coming Forth by Day” by Cassandra Wilson

With the release of her new album “Coming Forth by Day: A Celebration of Billie Holiday,” Cassandra Wilson nobly bestows her bewitching “Voice” to the transcendental songs of the legendary Billie Holiday. “I’m part of this legacy – I come from Billie by way of Abbey Lincoln,” Miss Wilson acknowledges.  Her confidently brave assurance has made her musical choices a magnificent journey full of critical acclaim, prestigious awards, wonderment and adoration. Within her eclectic repertoire of songs Wilson ownership of her material is certain, and her innate musicality is engaging, innovative and mesmerizingly warm.   The supreme jazz instrument that is Miss Wilson’s smoky contralto voice is the velvet embrace that weaves throughout her music. In her live performances her band of collaborators are exceptional musicians who find expressions to both compliment and enhance the emotional depth of Miss Wilson’s performances. Her choice of studio producers, and musicians (which often includes her band musicians) has left an indelible exclamation mark on the history of jazz. Such a mark, in fact, that Miss Wilson genre defying music which includes influences from Mississippi Blues, Country, Brit Pop, Pop, and standards have widened the definition of jazz.

Wilson interpretations of these well-known and revered songs that have become a reflection both the beauty and tragedy of Billie Holiday’s life are re-arranged and renewed. Miss Wilson will make these songs her homage to one her idols and our most treasured jazz vocalist. While the old standards sound new under Miss Wilson and producer Nick Launay tenure the music is imbued with verve and pathos. Cassandra Wilson emotional resonance and passionate interpretations of these wonderful songs are a most elegant celebration of American music, American history and the legendary national treasure, Billie Holiday.

 

 
 

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