Billie Holiday Live at Carnegie Hall

Vimala Rowe leads this tribute to Lady Day, inspired by the legendary 1956 concert at which Billie’s music was accompanied by extracts from her autobiography Lady Sings The Blues.  With a band led by pianist / MD Alex Webb, Rowe gives her unique interpretations of the Lady Day catalogue while quoting from her extraodinary life story. 

The show includes many of the most well-known Holiday songs, ranging – as did the Carnegie Hall concert – from the optimism of her 1930s work (What A Little Moonlight Can Do, Fine And Mellow) through her 1940s Torch songs (My Man, I Cover The Waterfront) to her self-penned classics Don’t Explain and Lady Sings The Blues – and many more.

Holiday’s memoir Lady Sings The Blues remains a unique document.  The New York Herald Tribune called it, ‘One of the most candid self-portraits ever painted on a typewriter’, and it retains the power to shock and intrigue more than half a century later.

Billie_Holiday_flyer Carnegie 1956 cropped

Vimala Rowe is a startling recent arrival on the UK vocal scene, appearing on two albums in 2016: ‘Call Me Lucky’ by Alex Webb & The Copasetics, and ‘Out Of The Sky’ by Vimala Rowe & John Etheridge.  She is working on her next.

‘Vimala Rowe was sensational, managing convincing renditions not just of the standards, but also the closing number, “Strange Fruit”, delivered with eye-moistening poignancy’ – The Arts Desk

‘Flawless tributes to the great jazz vocalists are a speciality of hers’ – The Guardian

The show normally features Sue Richardson (trumpet), Denys Baptiste or Katy Jungmann (tenor sax & clarinet), Neville Malcolm or Flo Moore (bass) and Sophie Alloway (drums)