Call for Art/Images: 100 Ways of Looking at Lady Day/Centennial Exhibition

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , on July 31, 2014 by cbweatherford

Billie in mirror

Billie Holiday, with her beloved dog Mister, gazes at her mirror image in 1947 photo by William Gottlieb for Downbeat magazine. Library of Congress Collection.

To mark the centennial of Billie Holiday’s birth–April 7, 2015–I am hosting an online exhibition of images of her: artist’s renderings, photos and fan tributes in the form of look-alikes. This exhibition will appear on this blog. There is a rolling deadline; images will be posted as they are accepted. There are no fees or prizes. Email submisisons to I am jurying the exhibition with help from Jeffery Boston Weatherford, a.k.a. Jeffery the Artist. Please share this call with artists, photographers, models and jazz fans.

Billie hits Broadway

Posted in Uncategorized on May 4, 2014 by cbweatherford


Tony award winner Audra McDonald performed in character on The Colbert Report. Hear her sing “What a Little Moonlight Can Do” and “God Bless the Child.”

For my own birthday: Billie sings Born to Love

Posted in Uncategorized on February 13, 2014 by cbweatherford

Empress of the Blues Bessie Smith, born today… perhaps

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , on April 16, 2012 by cbweatherford

Depending on whose account you believe, Bessie Smith, the Empress of the blues, was born today, April 15 (1894). A top recording artist of the 1920s, she influenced Billie Holiday. Young Eleanora, as Billie was known then, heard Bessie’s blues on the victrola while working as a towel girl at a Baltimore brothel. In rare footage, Bessie sings W. C. Handy’s “St. Louis Blues.”

Of course, Billie also covered that song. Props to Bessie, but you know I’m partial.

Billie sings “Why Was I Born?” 1937

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , on April 8, 2012 by cbweatherford

Today is the 97th anniversary of Billie’s birth.

Another songbird gone too soon…

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , on February 15, 2012 by cbweatherford

Who’d have thought we’d be comparing Whitney to Billie? At its peak, Whitney’s range was as wide as Lady’s was small. But Whitney’s demons ran just as deep. How providential that her last public performance was the hymn, “Yes, Jesus Loves Me.”

A Valentine from Billie…

Posted in Uncategorized on February 14, 2012 by cbweatherford

Painting Billie…

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , on February 10, 2012 by cbweatherford


I painted this in Spring 2011. It was my fourth painting.

Now, Billie’s a JC Penney Pitchwoman

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , on February 2, 2012 by cbweatherford

Billie lends her voice to a commercial launching JC Penney’s new Fair and Square image. Fairness seems to be issue #1 this political season. I couldn’t find the video, but the song is “I’ve Got My Love to Keep Me Warm.”

And to think that Billie left Artie Shaw’s band because a cigarette maker threatened to stop sponsoring the band’s radio show’s if its black vocalist continued. The band was prepared to walk, but Billie walked instead. The gig paid well, and she knew the guys needed the money.

I’m a fool to want you. Chanel ad…

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , on December 12, 2011 by cbweatherford

I’ll skip the perfume. Just give me Paris.