Fast Facts

Birth Name: Ella Fitzgerald
Nickname: “Lady Ella” and “First Lady of Song”
Birth date: April 25, 1917
Birth place: Newport News, Va.
Death date: June 15, 1996
Death place: Beverly Hills, Calif.

Parents: William Fitzgerald, Temperance Siblings: Frances Da Silva (half sister)

Married: Benny Kornegay (1939-1940), Ray Brown (1946-1952)
Children: Ray Brown, Jr.
Grandchildren: Alice Brown

First stage performance: Amateur Night at the Apollo Theater, 1934
First recording: “Love and Kisses,” Decca – 1936
First number one song: “A-Tisket, A-Tasket” – 1938

Favorite sports teams: (Los Angeles) Dodgers, Lakers

Did You Know?

  • As a child, Ella enjoyed playing baseball.
  • Ella’s favorite singers as a child were Louis Armstrong and Connee Boswell.
  • Ella made her first recording on June 12, 1935 with Chick Webb. It was called “Love and Kisses.
  • In the 1940s, Ella was known as one of the best scat singers in the world.
  • Throughout her career, Ella recorded at least 200 albums.