Ella Fitzgerald

Ella Fitzgerald

Ella Fitzgerald's most popular nicknames are the Queen of Jazz and the first lady of the American song, and no wonder, because the wide musical legacy of this artist made evident her spectacular natural talent to fill the stage and an unmatched vocal avant-garde. 

This led her to be one of the most iconic and influential jazz musicians, and also to enter with great mastery in genres such as blues, gospel, swing, bossa nova, samba, calypso and pop. A musical jewel of the 20th century.


Before bursting onto the American stage, Ella Jane Fitzgerald had a troubled childhood and youth. She was born in Newport News, Virginia, on April 25, 1917 and soon after her parents (William Fitzgerald, a train conductor, and Temperance "Tempie" Williams Fitzgerald, a laundress) separated.

Thereafter she moved with her mother to Yonkers (New York), where they lived with her stepfather Joseph Da Silva and her half-sister, Frances Fitzgerald, was born. In 1932 Tempie died after suffering a traffic accident, so Ella began to change residence frequently and came to live with some close relatives and even in a reform school. It was a period of bad school run and some problems with the police. 

In 1934, at the age of 17, Ella managed to participate for the first time in a talent contest at the Apollo Theater in Harlem. Although she had originally intended to dance, at the last minute she decided to perform the songs "Judy" and "The Object of My Affection" by Hoagy Carmichael, with which she impressed the audience and won. 

From that moment on, she started her artistic career. From 1935 he belonged to the Chick Webb band and in 1941 he ventured successfully as a soloist. In his more than fifty years of artistic career, he knew how to evolve to successfully take on the challenges of the genre. Well-executed bepop and scat became distinctive characteristics of his creation. 


Ella's taste for dancing and singing was a constant since she was very young. Hoagy Carmichael, Louis Armstrong and The Boswell Sisters are just some of the artists she grew up with and listened to with pleasure and great attention. Undoubtedly, they conditioned all her work. 

However, Ella's music marked several generations without distinctions of race or social class. The worldwide recognition of her work earned her 14 Grammys, including one for her artistic career, and many other awards for excellence. Even after her death in 1996, she continues to be honored by numerous artists who recognize her as the Queen of Jazz.


Throughout her career she made numerous collaborations with great artists. The most acclaimed in her time and still remembered today are: Ella Fitzgerald and Louis Armstrong and Frank Sinatra and Ella Fitzgerald. Count Basie, Duke Ellington, Joe Pass and Oscar Peterson also participated in his discography. 

With Louis Armstrong he went on to produce several albums, among which stand out: Ella and Louis, Ella and Louis Again and Porgy and Bess, 

Although they were not collaborations, a very interesting work of his career was the interpretation and recording, between 1956 and 1964, of albums by other musicians. This production was very well received by the public and the artists she interpreted, among them: Cole Porter, the Gershwins, Irving Berlin, Johnny Mercer, Duke Ellington and Rodgers and Hart.  


At the time of her retirement, in the 90's, Fitzgerald Singer had more than 200 albums recorded and approximately two thousand songs to her credit. Not for nothing is she considered one of the most fruitful artists in the history of Jazz. 

The following are the most outstanding albums by decade: 


Ella Sings Gershwin

For Sentimental Reasons

Songs in a Mellow Mood 

Lullabies of Birdland 

Miss Ella Fitzgerald & Mr Gordon Jenkins Invite You to Listen and Relax 

Ella Fitzgerald Sings the Cole Porter Songbook 

Ella and Louis 

Ella Fitzgerald Sings the Rodgers & Hart Songbook

Ella and Louis Again

Ella Fitzgerald Sings the Duke Ellington Songbook

Like Someone in Love

Porgy and Bess

Ella Swings Lightly

Ella Fitzgerald Sings the Irving Berlin Songbook

Get Happy!

Ella Fitzgerald Sings Sweet Songs for Swingers

Ella Fitzgerald Sings the George and Ira Gershwin Songbook


Ella Wishes You a Swinging Christmas

Hello, Love

Ella Fitzgerald Sings Songs from "Let No Man Write My Epitaph"

Ella Fitzgerald Sings the Harold Arlen Songbook

Clap Hands, Here Comes Charlie!

Rhythm Is My Business

Ella Swings Brightly with Nelson

Ella Swings Gently with Nelson

Ella Sings Broadway

Ella Fitzgerald Sings the Jerome Kern Songbook

Ella and Basie!

These Are the Blues

Hello, Dolly!

Ella Fitzgerald Sings the Johnny Mercer Song BookElla at Duke's Place

Whisper Not

Brighten the Corner

Ella Fitzgerald's Christmas

30 by Ella

Misty Blue



Things Ain't What They Used to Be (And You Better Believe It)

Ella Loves Cole

Take Love Easy

Fine and Mellow

Ella and Oscar

Fitzgerald and Pass... Again

Lady Time

Dream Dancing

A Classy Pair


Ella Abraça Jobim

The Best Is Yet to Come · Speak Love

Nice Work If You Can Get It

Easy Living

All That Jazz

Live albums

Ella at the Opera House

Ella Fitzgerald and Billie Holiday at Newport

Ella in Rome: The Birthday Concert

Ella Fitzgerald Live at Mister Kelly's

Ella in Berlin: Mack the Knife

Ella in Hollywood

Ella Returns to Berlin

Twelve Nights in Hollywood

Ella at Juan-Les-Pins

Ella in Hamburg

Ella and Duke at the Cote D'Azur

Sunshine of Your Love

Newport Jazz Festival: Live at Carnegie Hall

The Stockholm Concert, 1966

Ella in Budapest, Hungary

Ella à Nice

Jazz at Santa Monica Civic '72

Ella in London

Montreux '75

Montreux '77

Digital III at Montreux

A Perfect Match

Sophisticated Lady


The song that gave Fitzgerald the fame she needed to be recognized was a version of the children's song A-Tisket, A-Tasket, created in 1938. With this album she sold a million copies and, in addition, was on the charts for about 17 weeks.

Now, these are the 15 must-have Ella Fitzgerald songs:

A-Tisket-A-Tasket (1938)

It's Only A Paper Moon (1945)

Flying Home (1945)

Oh Lady Be Good (1947)

Let's Do It (Let's Fall In Love) (1956)

I Get A Kick Out Of You (1956)

Cheek to Cheek (1956)

Caravan (1957)

Sophisticated Lady (1957)

Midnight Sun (1957)

Summertime (1958)

Accentuate The Positive (1961)

Mack The Knife (1960)

S'Wonderful (1959)

Cry me a river


Ella was the first in many ways, for example, the first African-American to win a Grammy. But above all, she was one of the most dedicated performers in her career to leave an indelible mark on the history of jazz. 

In addition, when she was diagnosed with diabetes, she did not abandon the stage and continued to work for music. We invite you to enjoy her extensive repertoire at Jazz Images Records. 

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