Songwriters Friends

The great “Lady Day”, was born Eleanor Gough in Baltimore, MD on April 7, 1915.

The future "Lady Day" first heard the music of Louis Armstrong and Bessie Smith on a Victrola at Alice Dean's, the Baltimore "house of ill repute" where she ran errands and scrubbed floors as a young girl. She made her singing debut in obscure Harlem nightclubs (borrowing her professional name from screen star Billie Dove).

In 1933 she met jazz critic and talent scout John Hammond who introduced her to Benny Goodman. It was with Goodman that she had her first recording session. In 1935 she teamed with the Teddy Wilson orchestra and later with Count Basie and Artie Shaw.

From 1933 through 1944, Holiday recorded over 200 songs including the top ten hits “What a Little Moonlight Can Do”, “Twenty-Four Hours a Day”, “If You were Mine”, “These Foolish Things”, “No Regrets”, “A Fine Romance”, “The Way You Look Tonight”, “Who Loves You?”, “I Can’t Give You Anything But Love”, “Pennies from Heaven” (#3, 1937), “I’ve Got My Love to Keep Me Warm”, “This Year’s Kisses”, “The Mood That I’m In”, “Carelessly” (#1, 1937), “Mean to Me”, “A Sailboat in the Moonlight”, “Getting Some Fun Out of Life” and “I’m Gonna Lock My Heart” (#2, 1938).

In 1939 she co-wrote and recorded the jazz classic “Strange Fruite.” At the time of its release, the song was banned by radio networks as too controversial, but in the 1970’s was selected for the NARAS (Grammy) Hall of Fame.

Another Holiday penned composition “God Bless the Child” was released in 1941 and has also been inducted into the NARAS Hall of Fame.

Billie Holiday died on July 17, 1959 at the age of 44. It is her unique diction, inimitable phrasing and acute dramatic intensity that made her the outstanding jazz singer of her day and one of American music’s icons. "Singing songs like the 'The Man I Love' or 'Porgy' is no more work than sitting down and eating Chinese roast duck, and I love roast duck," she wrote in her autobiography. "I've lived songs like that."


American Quartet
Andrews Sisters
Louis Armstrong (Satchmo)
Fred Astaire
Chet Atkins
Gene Austin (Voice of the Southland)
Gene Autry
Nora Bayes
Brook Benton
Ben Bernie
Connee Boswell
Fanny Brice
Henry Burr
Cab Calloway
Glen Campbell
Albert Campbell
Carter Family (First Family of Country Music)
Enrico Caruso
Ray Charles
Patsy Cline
Larry Clinton
Rosemary Clooney
Nat Cole (King)
Arthur Collins
Perry Como
Bing Crosby
Bob Crosby
Frank Crumit
Vic Damone
Sammy Davis Jr.
Doris Day
Tommy Dorsey
Jimmy Dorsey
Cliff Edwards
Ruth Etting
Shep Fields
Eddie Fisher
Ella Fitzgerald
Tennessee Ernie Ford
Connie Francis
Aretha Franklin (Queen of Soul)
Lefty Frizzell
Jan Garber
Judy Garland
George J. Gaskin (The Silver Voice Irish Tenor)
Marvin Gaye
Benny Goodman (King of Swing)
Glen Gray
Byron G. Harlan
Marion Harris
Charles Harrison
Haydn Quartet
Dick Haymes
Horace Heidt
Woody Herman
Billie Holiday (Lady Day)
Whitney Houston
Eddy Howard
Ink Spots
Harry James
Lewis James
Al Jolson
Ada Jones
George Jones
Sammy Kaye
Hal Kemp
Wayne King (Waltz King)
Pee Wee King
Kay Kyser
Frankie Laine
Brenda Lee
Ted Lewis
Jerry Lee Lewis (The Killer)
Guy Lombardo
Vincent Lopez
Harry MacDonough
Freddy Martin
Dean Martin
Johnny Mathis
John McCormack
Glenn Miller
Mills Brothers
Vaughn Monroe
Russ Morgan
Billy Murray (The Denver Nightingale)
J.W. Myers
Ozzie Nelson
Olivia Newton-John
George Olsen
Original Dixieland Jazz Band
Vess L. Ossman (The King of the Banjo)
Buck Owens
Patti Page
Minnie Pearl
Peerless Quartet
Peter, Paul & Mary
Elvis Presley (The King)
Ray Price
Prince's Orchestra
Dan Quinn
Leo Reisman
Paul Robeson
Roy Rogers
Linda Ronstadt
Diana Ross
Ben Selvin
Artie Shaw
Nat Shilkret
Dinah Shore
Frank Sinatra
Bessie Smith (Empress of the Blues)
Sousa's Band
Len Spencer
Dusty Springfield
Jo Stafford
Frank Stanley
Kay Starr
Cal Stewart
Barbra Streisand
The 4 Seasons
The 5th Dimension
The Byrds
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The Commodores
The Drifters
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Ernest Tubb (Texas Troubadour)
Sophie Tucker
Van & Schenck
Walter Van Brunt
Sarah Vaughan
Fred Waring
Dionne Warwick
Ted Weems
Kitty Wells
Paul Whiteman
Margaret Whiting
Bert Williams
Andy Williams
Teddy Wilson
Tammy Wynette