Friday, January 8, 2016
Strange Fruit was adapted into song and first performed by (the legendary) Billie Holiday in 1939. Originally, it was an anti-racism poem written by a teacher, poet and songwriter by the name of Abel Meeropol. It became one of the songs most synonymous with Ms. Holiday, and is considered one of the most important and influential American songs of all time.
...but for some reason, I don't prefer it sung by Holiday. Which is weird. Usually the further back you go, from cover to cover, the closer you get to the original, the better a song you tend to find. Rare is the Jimi Hendrix who takes All Along The Watchtower and makes it his own, immortal version, but for me - oddly enough - my favorite version of Strange Fruit is this autotuned one from Kognitif. It loses half of the lyrics, I have no idea who the singer is, and when I think of the song, this is how it goes...