Strange name for a jazz club?
Not at all. Strange Fruit is named after a song made famous by Billy Holiday with performances and a recording in 1939. The song has been called "a declaration" and "the beginning of the Civil Rights Movement"
"Strange Fruit" originated as a poem written by the Jewish-American writer, teacher and songwriter Abel Meeropol in 1937 and performed and recorded by Billy Holiday in 1939. In the poem, Meeropol expressed his horror at lynchings in the U.S.
Between 1882 and 1968, 3,446 African Americans and 1,297 whites, were lynched in the United States according to the Tuskegee Institute. There have been 250 failed attempts to pass ant-lynching bills in Congress in the last 121 years and unbelievably it still hasn't been passed as of October 2021.
Billy Holiday famously got into a lot of trouble for singing Strange Fruit, but didn't stop doing so. The Jazz club is named in her honour and as a reminder that these events happened, that music is a powerful influencer and a reminder, a connection to the past that mustn't be forgotten.
Recently (2022) the US will saw sense and made this disgusting practice illegal, albeit the law will be symbolic these days, but that symbolism sends an important message.