Personalities | Ella Fitzgerald | Thirties | Jazz & Blues
Sixteen-year-old Ella Fitzgerald joined Chick Webb’s band in 1934 and became its biggest attraction. After Webb’s death in 1939 she became titular leader of the orchestra, which continued until 1942; she then worked as a solo artist. After the war Fitzgerald revealed an uncanny talent for bebop scat singing; it drew the attention of Norman Granz, who began adding her to his Jazz At The Philharmonic shows. He became her manager in 1953 and took over her recording career. Under Granz’s guidance she rose to become the reigning interpreter of twentieth-century American songs.
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