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The world of jazz in the post-war era was blessed with some very special female vocalists who have left a legacy of legendary and timeless recordings - Ella Fitzgerald, Billie Holiday, Sarah Vaughan, Peggy Lee, Dinah Washington, among others, readily spring to mind. One name whom many jazz fans will cite among their favourites above even these luminaries is that of Anita O'Day, an artist who perhaps more than any of her contemporaries, stayed true to her jazz roots and resisted the temptation to move towards the middle ground of popular music. Perhaps more than any other jazz singer, she embraced the ethos of bebop and West Coast cool jazz, and shared some of the hard-living characteristics of her musician contemporaries. Her reputation was firmly established during her stints with Gena Krupa and Stan Kenton's Orchestras between 1941 and 1945, and it is this formative era on which this collection focuses. It's a great value 51-track 2-CD set which includes most of the studio sides she recorded with Krupa, and a fair proportion of those she did with Stan Kenton, and includes a few of the 'live' broadcast recordings she made with them. It showcases the development of her talent while working with two of the important orchestras of the swing era, as she honed not only her distinctive vocal styling but the sharp and individual image which set her apart from the traditional big band girl singers.