Billie Holiday: happy, apparently healthy, and with her wonderful dog, Mister. I love that picture.
I can only listen to her sing “Until the Real Thing Comes Along” about once a year, because I hate, hate, hate to cry. But this song is a perfect distillation of love and pain, and I needed to hear it again tonight.
Here you go: Ella forgets the words to “Mack the Knife” halfway through a 1960 performance in Berlin. She makes up her own, and her voice just becomes more and more beautiful. Plus, she’s laughing while she’s singing, and imitating Louis Armstrong, because she can. She makes me happy.