All of Me – Billie Holiday & Lester Young

In the Dark

After an even more stressful day than usual I decided to have a quick look at Youtube before going home. That’s how I found this rare and priceless gem. It’s a wonderful performance of All of Me featuring one of the greatest combinations of musical talent in Jazz history, Billie Holiday and Lester Young, but it’s a discarded track that was never released on record “Why would anyone discard such a masterpiece?”, I hear you ask. Well, that’s simply because it ran over the three minutes that could fit onto an old-style 78rpm disk. The reason it is too long is that there’s more than the usual ration of Lester Young’s tenor saxophone, in the form of a superb extended solo that is so beautiful it brought tears to my eyes. This is as perfect a performance as you could hope to hear, but it is brought back down…

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