Billy Eckstine and an Adoring Fan, 1949

Billy Eckstine and an Adoring Fan, 1949

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]

This entry was posted in 20th Century, Historical Photos, Modern History, Pop Culture History, U.S. History and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Billy Eckstine and an Adoring Fan, 1949

  1. Wayne Owen Richards says:

    One of Mr B’s greatest performances is his rendition of “Misty”.

    Quite possibly, the young lady’s reaction to Mr B in the photograph was due to her listening endlessly to his edition of “Misty”.

    Here is a YouTube link to Billy Eckstine’s rendition of “Misty”:-


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