THE VOICE OF AMERICA: ELLA FITZGERALD (1918-1996)

ELLA FITZGERALD: 1918-1996

I sing like I feel," Ella Fitzgerald would say. By that casual standard, it was a wonderful life. She sang some of the best music ever written in America, and, feeling it, she sang it wonderfully. For many, indeed, she sang it definitively. "I never knew how good our songs were," Ira Gershwin once remarked, "until I heard Ella Fitzgerald sing them." By the time she died at home in Beverly Hills last week at 78, she had spread the treasure of her voice over thousands of songs and half a dozen generations, cutting everyone in on the wonder. There was...

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