Photo by Pablo Dewin/Courtesy of the artist
Photo by Pablo Dewin/Courtesy of the artist

As one of the most beloved singers of the 20th century, Ella Fitzgerald was admired around the world. She was also one of the most acclaimed, earning a National Endowment for the Arts Jazz Master award; a National Medal of Art and a Presidential Medal of Freedom, 14 Grammy Awards and honorary doctorates from Harvard, Yale, Princeton and Howard Universities.

As an acrobatic vocalist, revered performer and scatting phenom, Fitzgerald and her musical genius cast a long and storied shadow. Even two decades after her death, Fitzgerald’s influence is still being felt today — not just in jazz, but across all kinds of genres.

Latinx musicians Mabiland and Daymé Arocena feel that influence. They both mention Fitzgerald in their official bios and both say they feel a strong connection to the legend’s music.

For the full story, visit NPR.org/Music.

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