Ella Fitzgerald: America’s First Lady Of Song
_princess-: God I love Ella! Such a beautiful voice. Her work with Louis Armstrong is some of the most soothing music I’ve ever heard.
Gwandeh: She is one of the all time greats.
sushipusha: She did a Memorex commercial where the viewer was asked “Is it real or is it Memorex?” Anyway it featured a skat by her that ended with a glass being shattered.
For those too young Memorex was an audio tape.
jovyeo1: Must have been annoying for her parents when all these musicians would knock on her door and borrow her baby.
Recidive: How would you go about tuning an instrument to a voice? Is this something you can do by ear alone? I don’t play any instruments but I’m curious of how it would work
Messisfoot: Is pitch something one is born with or wouldn’t she have to practice at it?
Furthermore, how does one prove that this wasn’t a result of her practicing?
everawed: Classical musicians HATE HER
dgnunch1: There’s this one live performance she does of the boy from Ipanema *that blows my fucking mind.* I’m not musically inclined but when I heard a part of it as a teenager I replayed it over and over and couldn’t replicate the specific part even a little. It was deleted from YouTube for whatever reason, but I saved the recording. Not sure if it exists elsewhere, might upload it sometime
edit: holy shit i can’t find it on my usb, and anywhere on youtube. probably on my old broken phone, might have to do a recording of a recording tho i gotta rebuy the old iphone charger since it’s an old phone rip this is heartbreaking. all of her performances of this song are very very different. i remember she says something about samba before the song starts
LISTEN AT 1:57 HOW SHE SAYS “TALL AND TAN AND YOUNG AND HANDSOME” she doesn’t do that on any of the youtube recordings. the popular “1965 rare” one sounds similar but she’s not trying anywhere near as hard as this. also the whole ending is just leagues above the other versions in my opinion
it seems like im overreacting but i genuinely thought i would never ever hear that part again. i factory reset the old phone i was talking about last year b4 i moved to the uk. also she said “bossanova” at the start, not samba, my memory was messed up))
FuzzyEater: Perfect pitch or not, everyone in the band can tune to a specific frequency and they’ll be in tune. It doesn’t really matter either way, unless you’re playing along with a recording.
Samwyzh: More like Ella *Pitch*gerald amiright?
I’ll leave now…
amiraultk: TIL: There are more people with perfect pitch in this thread than there are in all of history.
Britwms: She also had a great ear for melodies and was known to add tons of teases of other famous songs in her solos. She apparently wasn’t aware the extent she was doing this. One show in particular she knew some orchestra members were in attendance and teased some classical songs but had no idea that she had done this.
CommanderVillain: This has been proven to be a myth.
AlfredBKristiansen: > the band musicians she worked with would tune their instruments to her voice.
That… sounds apocryphal. Tuning forks and pitch pipes were a thing back then.
Also, as a practical matter, the band would just tune themselves to whatever piano was in the room, given how difficult and time-consuming tuning the piano to perfect pitch each time would be.
the_salty_seaman: So, I hate to admit it, but for the longest time I thought her name was “Ellafitz Gerald”. I didn’t realize how stupid that was until like, last year.
LiverDrinker: I’ve listened almost exclusively to metal since I was 13. Thanks to Fallout 4, I fell in love with Ella, which led to falling in love with Billie Holiday and the genre in general.
Now I listen to Metal, Jazz, Blues and Reggae.
Lady Ella was incredible.
lurking_digger: Genetics…better than training?
Leebean: Ok, so to clarify some points:
Perfect Pitch: The *innate* ability to identify the pitch of any sound with a name. You are born with this. It’s thought to be related to synesthesia (which is where you see colors, among other things, when hearing sound. Deserves its own TIL in itself). If you can immediately identify the pitch your refrigerator is humming at, or sing me a perfectly in tune Bb, you have perfect Pitch. It’s like seeing a rainbow and knowing right away what’s Red. Once you learn what “Red” is, you’ll know it forever, that easily. You either have it or you don’t.
Relative Pitch: The *learned* ability to use reference pitches to infer the relative placement of notes. You can train this ability to a very high level and can even have an ability similar to Perfect Pitch, but you’re always going to have to think about it. This is where most of us mere mortals fall.
All in all, this seems exaggerated. If there’s a piano there (which there usually is in jazz combos) they’re going to tune to the piano because ain’t no way someone is gonna retune 88×3 strings just cause Ella’s A is higher. And if that piano is flat, she’s going to have to purposely sing out of tune (the one time Perfect Pitch is a curse and not a blessing) for the whole show, which is just as impressive, if not as noticeable to the audience. Still mad skills, but doesn’t sound as cool in a TIL
Source: Professional Symphony Musician (Cello) who would really like to have been born with Perfect Pitch. Would have made sight singing exams way easier…
jman4220: This sounds like the kinda bullshit that died when good search engines came around.
sean488: It’s common for a band to tune their instruments to the lead instrument. That way they are all in tune together. In this case (and others) the lead instrument was a voice. This also helps to hide any shortcomings, since everyone is tuned the same.
TheBonkGoggler: Just the most incredible singer and such a performer, never has someone impersonating a trumpet been so eloquent- we will likely never see such a talent for a long time
TheTurtler31: Wtf her voice is legitimately the smoothest voice I’ve ever heard. Like I just listened to three different songs and her voice never cut my ears even once. That’s insane. Imagine if she born in this era where music is so accessible and distributed? She’d put everyone else out of business haha