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Lena Horne, photographed as she sang by Philippe Halsmann in 1954. Ms. Horne was never a big fan of her own singing voice. In 1943, she told Newsweek magazine that she was still “learning to sing,” and she would later tell many interviewers how much she loved Aretha Franklin and wanted to sing like her.

Billie Holiday (born Eleanora Fagan), aka Lady Day. She was a seminal influence on jazz pop singing. Her vocal style, strongly inspired by jazz instrumentalists, pioneered a new way of manipulating phrasing tempo. Above all, she was admired for her deeply personal intimate approach to singing. She co-wrote only a few songs, several of them becoming jazz standards, notably God Bless the Child, Don't Explain, Lady Sings the Blues. One of her signature songs includes Strange Fruit. R.I.P.

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