Marilyn Monroe Helped Ella Fitzgerald Get Into The Big Leagues

Ella Fitzgerald was not allowed to play at Mocambo because she was not glamorous enough. Then, one of Ella’s biggest fans made a telephone call that quite possibly changed the path of her career for good. Here, Ella tells the story of how Marilyn Monroe changed her life: “I owe Marilyn Monroe a real debt… she personally called the owner of the Mocambo, and told him she wanted me booked immediately, and if he would do it, she would take a front table every night. She told him – and it was true, due to Marilyn’s superstar status – that the press would go wild. The owner said yes, and Marilyn was there, front table, every night. The press went overboard. After that, I never had to play a small jazz club again. She was an unusual woman – a little ahead of her times. And she didn’t know it.”
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