Ella Fitzgerald: Shaping Influences

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Shaping Influences Ella Fitzgerald had a struggling childhood that impacted her future tremendously. Her mother died when she was fifteen, leaving her with her abusive step father. She then moved in with her aunt in Harlem, which was the hub of jazz music during the decade. Stated from the NPR news cast, Morning Edition, “She spent time with an aunt, then in foster care and a reformatory,” this transition in her life she kept as a secret for the public. Living in these situations taught her to strive for her dream of becoming a singer and dancer. When living on the street she sang and danced for money, this instilled in her a strong work ethic that would stay with her when she was on the road traveling around the world to sing. The reformatory…show more content…
Ella’s first big break was when Chick Web hired her to sing in his band in 1935. She recorded her first album with Chick and her first hit. At age twenty she reached number one in national charts for the song, "A-tisket, A-tasket" recorded with Chick. He fostered her talent and was, essentially, the reason for her fame. Her fame would not have been possible without Chick being her mentor. When he died she was distraught, she had lost a parental figure yet again. The relationship between her and Chick was close to a father-daughter relationship. She was introduced to jazz legends, such as Duke Ellington, when performing with Chick’s band. These pictures are of Chick Web and Ella along with their top chart record from, Ella Fitzgerald: A Biography of the First Lady of Jazz, written by Stuart Nicholson. Another influence in Ella’s life was Norman Granz who kept Ella’s career afloat. He was her manager who ended up becoming her friend and also a close part of her family. He signed her to the Verve Label, in which she acquired her pivotal of fame and fortune. Their relationship kept her grounded and was beneficial to her career. Norman was the reason for her achieving as much as she did during her lifetime including her earning her thirteen grammies. He managed her through her most successful tours around the

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