The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #45795   Message #677873
Posted By: Callie
28-Mar-02 - 12:03 AM
Thread Name: Best version of Strange Fruit
Subject: RE: BS: Best version of Strange Fruit
When I hear Billie Holiday sing it I hear unspeakable sadness. I know her voice is an acquired taste. I'm happy to have acquired it.

If you wait a month or two I can also boast that my group Touchwood's version is a great version (although not as legendary as Billie's!!!). We sing it in 3 part harmony, unaccompanied. A tricky piece to sing in harmony because of all the diminished chords in it.

I arranged it sitting at a piano in North Carolina. I brought it back to Australia where Touchwood learnt it. Black deaths in custody is a big issue here in Australia. So although the lynchings have stopped, they haven't really, and the song is very significant to us and our audiences when we sing it.

As far as I understand, Abel Meeropol wrote it on his own. There was no "3 way thing" (a big myth).

Time magazine voted "Strange Fruit" the best song ever written. (What would the folks at Time know? In this case, I reckon they're pretty spot on!).

Callie