(2 out of 5 stars)
"Everyone has their own fave Billie Holiday, I guess - this ain't mine. It's mostly remakes made in the 50's, and they sound antiseptic compared with the originals. In particular "Strange fruit" a song about lynching, is undercut by an amateur, theatrical piano. It's not that Billie lost her touch (aircheck recordings from the 50's reveal brilliance), but Verve really undercut her voice here. Too bad."
Gary F. Taylor | Biloxi, MS USA | 12/14/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"The usual controversy continues: was Billie better earlier or later in her career? Many will tell you that the ravages of time and hard-living destroyed her voice, and that her late recordings are sad listening; an equal number will tell you that her early voice, although charming, never possessed the depth of emotion communicated in her later recordings.If you prefer the young Holiday, you may not like this particular collection. If you have never heard the later recordings and would like to, this particular collection would be an excellent choice. And if you are already a fan of the later recordings, you will find that every single track in the collection is essential."