Monday, June 28, 2010

New York: Angel of Harlem


U2: Angel of Harlem


Harlem is a well-known Manhattan neighborhood, north of Central Park and Columbia University, tucked between the Hudson and Harlem Rivers. Some call it the home of Black America, as migration of African-Americans from the south to industrial northern cities, and especially New York City, took hold in the twentieth century. The 1920s and later ushered in a cultural explosion of Black expression in music, art, and literature, known as the Harlem Renaissance. Jazz was a huge part of this movement.

Billie Holiday, U2's "Angel of Harlem", grew up in New York City and found fame in the Harlem nightclubs. She had a terrible childhood, a hard life, and an even harder death, but she still managed to create a legend for herself. U2 pays tribute to Lady Day in this 1988 song, from Rattle and Hum.

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