Billie Holiday

The Monterey Jazz Festival with Buddy DeFranco 1958

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Appearing at the first Monterey Jazz Festival, Billie Holiday tried gamely to succeed, but during this live set she often sounds a bit out of it. Accompanied by the Mal Waldron Trio (and on the final few numbers baritonist Gerry Mulligan, altoist Benny Carter and clarinetist Buddy DeFranco), Lady Day struggles through the half-hour set, performing old favorites but often sounding quite weak. The results, as heard on this LP (recorded nine months before her death), are historic but often rather sad.