Google has struck a high note with its colourful Google Doodle in honour of what would have been jazz singer Ella Fitzgerald’s 96th birthday today.
Fitzgerald was born on 25 April 1917 in Newport News, Virginia, and made her singing debut at the age of 17. The location was the Apollo Theater in Harlem, New York, where she pulled in a weekly audience.
Her singing career then spanned six decades, with a vocal range that attracted the nicknames ‘Lady Ella’, ‘the first lady of song’, and ‘the queen of jazz’.
Fitzgerald is well known for her series of Songbook albums, which honour songwriters such as the Gershwins, Cole Porter and Duke Ellington.
She made several appearances on major US TV programmes, and recorded 200 albums that sold 40m copies and helped earn 13 Grammy awards.
In 1987, then-US President Ronald Reagan awarded her the national medal of arts.
Her final public performance was a concert at Carnegie Hall in New York, in 1991. Five years later, at the age of 79, she died in Beverly Hills, California.
Watch Ella Fitzgerald perform one of her best-known songs, Mack the Knife, here: