At this time, I have a mild obsession with the lengendary musician Billie Holiday. For any of those who don’t know her, she was one of the greatest jazz singers to ever exist. Being a jazz musician and vocalist, I can’t believe that I never really checked her out during my time at music school. It’s shameful almost. However, I am making up for lost time. It’s kind of cool. I feel like I’ve found this treasure and I’m looking at everything in the treasure box. Currently, I’m listening to the Columbia “The Legacy1933-1958” box set. It’s 3 discs with about 20 or more songs on each. It’s so cool to hear all those great musicians playing with Billie (Lester Young sounds so good!)
On a more studious note, I’ve been checking out how Billie Holiday phrases her melodies and I’m especially checking out her beat. She has the greatest time feel ever. It’s so laid back and the beat is so strong. My best friend and one of the great pianists in New York, Jacob Sacks says that one of the best things one can do to study and work on time and different time feels is to play the exact time feel as the artist while the recording is playing. I have done this type of study with other aritsts without actually intending to “study”. I would just be obsessed and listen to the recording hundreds of times and it just started to stick. But this time, I’m actually “studying” what Billie is doing. It’s super cool and it excites me to discover the amazing music that Billie Holiday created. I love listening to the music and I am constantly learning something new. Go and check out Billie Holiday. You won’t regret it!