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Black History Month: Billie Holiday Special on (DOLL) PBS

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Announcer: This evening's program is brought to you by your local PBS station WTTW Chicago. Remembering Billie Holliday and all the fine Jazz ballads from the 30's through the 50's, part of our Black History series for this month.

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Our music begins....


Riffin' the Scotch 1933 Benny Goodman Band 
Good evening, I'm your host, Gerry.

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What you just heard was "Riffin' the Scotch" with the Benny Goodman band in 1933 and an eighteen-year-old singer, Eleanora Fagan. 

Who was that, you may ask? The answer is the intrepid Billie Holiday. We celebrate tonight her amazing music and the great bands she performed with throughout her  career. Our program tonight will span some thirty years, so let's get started.

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I'm pleased to introduce someone you all know as Chicago's Jennifer. 

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Thank you, Gerry. This song has a long history going back to 1928 and composed by Sigmund Romberg and lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein II for another Broadway show, "The New Moon". I'm singing to Billie Hollidays', "Lover Come Back" to me. 


Billie Holiday sings, "Lover Come Back to Me," 1944

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Jennifer: 
And while I'm waiting here
This heart of mine is singing
Lover come back to me.....

Gerry: Take a bow, Jennifer.
Our next song will be "I Cried for You" which Billie recorded for the Brunswick recording company in 1936. 

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Sonnie will switch to the sax with this great old tune. 
Sung by our Trio of Jennifer, Callie, and Ella, and they are all hometown gals from the Chicago area.

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Trio: ....that beauty need only be a whisper.


I Cried for You

Gerry: The next great tune, "Willow Weep for Me" was written in 1932 by a woman, Ann Ronell, who also wrote the lyrics. Sung by many different artists over the years, you may even remember the Chad and Jeremy version from the 1965. 

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Tonight we will have the sultry tones of Ella singing this old standby for you, with Tres on guitar and Zara on Strings.


Willow Weep for Me 1954 by Billie Holliday

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.....When the shadows fall, 
bend old willow and 
weep for me, 
Weep, weep, willow, weep...

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Gerry: I'm speechless, great beauty, tone, and great lyrics. Thank you, Ella.

 Next, how about an upbeat number on film with Billie and Satchmo from the 1947 movie, "New Orleans" and "Blues are a Brewin'"was written by Eddie DeLange and Louis Alter and originally performed by 
Louis Armstrong and Billie Holliday.


That's just yesterday, no a few years ago, well seventy-seven. Phew...and who can stand up to Satchmo.

Now something upbeat...with the Mother-Daughter duo, Ella and Callie. Our ladies performing '
"Too Close for Comfort".

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Callie: Be wise, be smart, behave, my heartDon't upset your cart when he's so close

Ella: Be soft, be sweet, but be discreet
Don't go off your feet, he's so close for comfort...


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Duo: 
...Too close, too close for comfort, oh, please, not againToo close, too close to know just when to say ""when""
....
On your guard, take care, 
while there's such temptationOne thing leads to anotherToo late to run for coverHe's much too close for comfort now.

Applauding Gerry: Ladies, please take a bow...!

We will end our time with Billie together with "I'll be Seeing You," the music by Sammy Fain and lyrics by Irving Kahal. Composed in 1938 for a lost musical that closed after just fifteen performances. Billie was at her best tugging at our own heart's loves and losses.


This standard has endured and Billie Holliday's version is one of the best. Here's our band and our home town gals singing, "I'll be Seeing You."

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Ella:
 I'll be seeing you
 In all the old familiar places
That this heart of mine embracesAll day through...

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Callie:
In that small cafe
The park across the way
The children's carouselThe chestnut treesThe wishing well...

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Jennifer: 
I'll be seeing youIn every lovely summer's dayIn everything that's light and gayI'll always think of you that way...

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Trio: We'll find you in the morning sun
And when the night is new....

We'll be looking at the moon 
But we'll be seeing you....

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Gerry: I hope you enjoyed our time together. We want to thank our lovely performers:

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Callie, Ella and of course Jennifer for their heartfelt performances. 

Special thanks to our talented band for bringing us back to the days of 
Billie Holliday and the great bands of the 1920's to through the 1950's.

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Tres on guitars.....(Tres riffing.....)
.            
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Zara on Strings...

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Sonnie on horns, sax and clarinet and 

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Gene, "Sticks" on percussion.


Gerry: We thank all our loyal viewers for your continued support for WTTW Channel 11, Chicago and Black History Month.  Without you, these programs would not be possible and of course the great career of 
Miss Billie Holliday!

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Thanks for Viewing:

All recordings are from Youtube share.
Lyrics found on LyricFind

Set design and diorama
   3 Black Foam core-Dollar store
    18" doll backdrop
    Dollar store chairs
    Piano---thrift store repainted
    Drums thrift store 
    Horns- Frenchorn-ornament, clarinet-painted plastic charm, sax-painted plastic charm.
   Ball lights---thrift store
   Dolls all Mattel, except Gerry/Gerard-Fresh doll
   Tuxedos Mattel    
   Gals clothing: Callie/Colette-hand sewn me, Ella-Etsy, Jennifer-China
   Keyboard and microphones-Mattel

Lighting--totally dark room with 3 small gooseneck spot lamps, 1 above, 1 left, 1 right. Photos taken on my phone, edited on computer.

Personal Note: My mother played the radio constantly all through my childhood. I probably know more songs and lyrics from the 30s-60's than any popular music now. There are so many Black artists to choose from, but it was the Big Bands I remembered the most: Tommy Dorsey, Benny Goodman, Duke Ellington, Cab Calloway as my mom's favorites and Billie Holliday crossed all those big band years with her catalog of  standards that are still performed today.  

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I'm joining these fine Parties:\








    

Think Barbie and Ken 1980s ala Barbie Movie mode!

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Hi, Barbie!

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Hi, Ken!

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You Look Lovely today, Barbie!

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Thank-you,Ken? 

KEN:(What do I look like, chopped Liver?)


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These flowers are for you!

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Barbie: They are beautiful, thank you, KEN

Ken: May I kiss you?

Barbie: Ummmmm, no.

        But, Maybe I should KISS YOU! 

(Ken MELTs and The End)


Diorama: backyard of the townhouse...old 18" doll backdrop
Barbie's clothes---thrift store finds, saddle shoes Vintage
Ken's clothes---thrift store leisure suit...and newer playline shirt
Rose bunch from Trish's of course.
Mode: Crack me up Barbie and Ken talk from the movie.


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I have not been paid or reimbursed in anyway for my opinions or products shown, or from where I shop. 






'S in the City Party': Fashion, Bling and of course SHOES! PHOTO HEAVY! Maybe PG-13?

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Barbie and Chelsea put the finishing touches on the party buffet table for the SATC Party.

Barbie: Wow, you did a great job helping me with all the food Chelsea. 

Chelsea: What is SATC?

Barbie: Well it's series about girlfriends and some movies, too. Really celebrating friendship.

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Chelsea: Okay. Well, I liked helping. Maybe I can get some extra-credit in my Home Economics class! I really liked making the sushi rolls, that was FUN. 

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Barbie: There's the doorbell. It's Melanie and Melissa.
Chelsea: Hi, Melissa! 

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Melissa: Wow, Chelsea, you weren't kidding when you said there would be lots of food. Thanks for having me Ms.Roberts.

Melanie: Thanks so much for inviting us. My hubby is off at a game party and this was such a good idea to have a real 'Girls Only' option.

Barbie: Why don't you two go up to Chelsea's room before everyone gets here.

Chelsea: I already took snacks up there.

(Next to arrive is Trish)

Trish: Thanks so much for the invite, I can't stay long, this week is SOOOOO busy at the shop...with Valentines Day. I won't be able to stay for the movie. 

Barbie: I totally understand, stay as long as you want, and you look so adorable. 

Trish: Well, just don't look at my hands, I REALLY need a manicure, I must have a thousand rose thorn cuts.

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Barbie: I know what you mean--I haven't seen my legs since Christmas.

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Doorbell: Brrrinnnnng!

Trish:(Wow, what a spread, dumplings, I love stuffed  dumplings.)

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Barbie: Lots of choices! Help yourself!

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Finger food and tasty too!

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Melanie: Hi, I'm Melanie. Barbie and I are in the same exercise class and my daughter is friends with Chelsea.

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Trish: I'm Trish I own the flower shop down the street. Wow, those drinks look awesome. 

Melanie: Sure do, and extra bottles on the side if you want to add some. Wasn't this a great idea, I loved all the movies and the tv series?

(Over across the room)
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Denise (R): How have you been, Richelle. You are looking very 'Carrie' for this party. This is certainly better than enduring another football game. 

Richelle: *(Chuckle) This outfit was an excuse to unearth some 90's clothing. I was just home to Wisconsin and didn't have the heart to get rid of this. And you must have be channeling, 'Samantha'. That's an awesome jacket.

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Denise (L): You really have to 'DO' my office, Richelle, if you have time. It bores me to tears to work in there---it's so bland. 

Richelle: I would be glad to assist you in any way, say later in the week?

(Upstairs Ken and Joe are watching the game, and the girls are ...trying to eavesdrop.)

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Melissa: It's been ages since I've had pizza and a shake. Foofie really likes me.

Chelsea: Well, she just wants to lick your face! There sure is a lot of noise coming from downstairs for a 'ladies party'.

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Vickie: Sorry, Zoe and I are late. We didn't miss any gossip, I hope?

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Vickie: I'm a very old---Carrie---maybe, but this was such a great idea. You all look sooooo GORGEOUS!
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Vickie: Is it getting warm in here?
Group: (Female wolf whistles....Take it all off!)

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Midge: Let's get a photo of all these SHOES.

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Vickie: Oooh, now what's in those cocktails?

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Barbie: Green is a lime concoction of pineapple, lime and some sherbet. The pink is strawberry-lemon sherbet fizz. You can add more of your own poison.

Denise: Divine, make your own POISON, love that!

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Barbie: Okay, everyone, let's go around and name our favorite person or thing in 'S and the City' and Zoe, you start.

Zoe: Maybe Charlotte, I'm pretty shy like her.

Melanie: I definitely loved all the shoes...they are a character aren't they?

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Richelle: Why are you smiling, Midge?

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Midge: Well, the clothes and shoes of course, but, ahhhh, but, um, oh, my favorite...

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(blushing)my f
avorite has to.... 
be 

DRUM-ROL-L-L-L-L=L PLEASE!


(SCREECHING RAUCOUS LAUGHTER)

Trish: If ONLY, I'll second that!

Barbie: Here's to Mr. Big and girl-friendship and learning to love ourselves, just the way we are! CHEERS EVERYONE and bottoms UP. 

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Richelle:  And for supporting each other, and this great party!

Meanwhile: Upstairs in the den the game is still going on, forever in fact.

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Ken: This is a great game----did you hear that coming from downstairs? 

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Joe: I don't know what they are doing, but some sort of cheering, whoa...a First Down!  

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Chelsea: Wow, that's a lot of noise coming from downstairs. And my sister says we are loud.

Melissa: What is 'S and the City' anyway?

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Chelsea: I don't know, but I sure want to find out 
about 
MR.BIG?

Melissa: Maybe he just has a BIG personality?

If you enjoyed this post(s), please join me by email- at 
FOLLOW IT---upper right hand corner.

I have not been paid or reimbursed in anyway for my opinions or products shown, or from where I shop.