Audible is launching Billie Was a Black Woman, written, created and hosted by Rebecca Carroll.
The four-part series refract Black womanhood through the prism of the life of legendary jazz singer Billie Holiday – her stories, her music, and her complicated legacy.
In each episode, Carroll dives into different facets of Billie’s life, exploring what it means to defy the narrow categorizations thrust upon Black artists, Black bodies, and Black womanhood today.
The podcast will be followed by a special episode that celebrates how her legacy has inspired the work of those who followed her. The series will feature the likes of Andra Day, who stars as Holiday, director Lee Daniels as well as Dr. Angela Davis, Laverne Cox, Naomi Canpbell, and Mariah Carey, among others.
Made in collaboration with Paramount Pictures and the producers of The United States vs. Billie Holiday, the series will launch on Audible and Amazon Music on Holiday’s birthday, April 7, 2021.
The film tells the story of how Holiday was targeted by the government in an effort to racialize the war on drugs, aiming to stop her singing Strange Fruit. Directed by Daniels, it is based on Johann Hari’s Chasing The Scream: The First and Last Days of the War on Drugs.
It will be released on February 26 via Hulu.
Carroll is a writer, creative consultant, editor-at-large, and host of the podcast Come Through with Rebecca Carroll. She is the author of several books about race in America, including Sugar in the Raw: Voices of Young Black Girls in America. Her latest book, Surviving the White Gaze: A Memoir, was published this month, and has been optioned by MGM Studios and Killer Films with Carroll attached to adapt and executive produce for TV.
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