Cassandra Wilson pays tribute to Billy Holiday
Singer Cassandra Wilson’s new album “Coming Forth By Day,” is a tribute to Billie Holiday. To be released on April 7, 2015, Billie Holiday’s 100th birthday. Wilson, who has always been inspired by Holiday, choose the title to honour the iconic singer. “Coming Forth By Day” is an English translation of the title of the ancient Egyptian Book of the Dead, which is a collection of magic spells that are intended to guide the dead safely through the afterlife.
Wilson uses a distinctive and bold approach in “Lady Day’s” iconic songs. Together with producer Nick Launay (known for his work with Nick Cave), she chose songs that reflect Holiday’s entire tragic career. The album also includes a version of the beautiful “Last Song (For Lester),” the heartbreaking last message from Billie to her love Lester Young. (When Billie heard that Lester was deceased, she immediately flew to his funeral. Lester’s family did not let her sing at the funeral.)
“Coming Forth by Day” is an homage dedicated to the beauty, power, and genius of Billie Holiday. A collection of musical spells, prescriptions for navigating the dubious myths surrounding her life and times, this record is a vehicle for the re-emergence of Billie’s songbook in the 21st century,” said Cassandra Wilson.
The album contains a surprising choice of musicians. It is produced by Nick Launay, who previously worked closely with Nick Cave. It includes guitarists T Bone Burnett and Nick Zinner of the Yeah Yeah Yeahs. String arrangements by Van Dyke Parks, the rhythm section of The Bad Seeds (drummer Thomas Wydler and bassist Martyn P. Casey). Jon Cowherd (piano) and Kevin Breit (guitar).
“We set out to dig deep into the lyrics, and the meaning behind why theywere written. The result is a whole new experience for the listener, bone healing Those familiar with Cassandra and newcomers. It’s moving and engaging beyond words … this one is for the ears and soul, “says producer Nick Launay.
Cassandra Wilson will be touring extensively in 2015.