Taken by photographer Martha Holmes in 1949 of singer Billy Eckstine, here’s the caption:
“Singer Billy Eckstine gets a hug from an adoring fan after a show in New York in 1949. This was one of Martha Holmes’s own favorite photographs”
I can see why! I love this photo so much! The reactions of the two main people in the photo seem so sincere: the woman seems genuinely happy and Eckstine seems gracious with her adoration of him. Even the three people to the right of the main frame seem ecstatic. A reaction that many of us might have if we were to meet our favourite singer.
Billy Eckstine (1914-1993) is not as widely known today as some of his contemporaries, but he was a famous band leader/R&B singer of the 1940s and 50s, influencing a lot of the early soul singers of the 50s. Nicknamed Mr. B, he was the epitome of the dapper jazz hipster. (Yes, even today’s hipsters are historical repeats!) Mr B. was ‘suiting up’ way before Barney Stinson. Here’s a few cool links if you don’t know him well:
– Eckstine’s Wikipedia page
– Three YouTube videos: September Song (a great example of his amazing voice), Rhythm in a Riff (a great example of his band leader sound – with bonus 40s-dancers who share an uncanny resemblance to Beyonce’s Single Ladies video), and Rosetta (with Nat King Cole).
Source: [Life Magazine]