Paintings and Protest Songs

h1 March 9th, 2017 by jules

“At the club, Barney told Billie that ‘Strange Fruit’ would be the last song in her set, with no encores to follow. When it was over, she’d quietly leave the stage.”
(Click to enlarge spread)


Since I talked over at Kirkus last week (here) with painter and illustrator Charlotte Riley-Webb, I’m following up, as always, with some art from the book we discussed, Gary Golio’s Strange Fruit: Billie Holiday and the Power of a Protest Song (Millbrook/Lerner, February 2017).

More spreads below. Until tomorrow …


“At a party in Harlem, Billie sang ‘Strange Fruit.’ Her voice, with Abel’s words. Everyone in the apartment became quiet, and the smiles left their faces. Billie had her answer.”
(Click to enlarge spread)


“A few people nearly got up from their seats and left. …”
(Click to enlarge spread)



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STRANGE FRUIT: BILLIE HOLIDAY AND THE POWER OF A PROTEST SONG. Text copyright © 2017 by Gary Golio. Illustrations copyright © 2017 by Charlotte Riley-Webb. Reproduced by permission of the publisher, Millbrook Press, Minneapolis.

One comment to “Paintings and Protest Songs”

  1. I like the scribbly nature of the artwork in this – the emotions provoked by the song are equally turbulent.

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