Pops: A Life of Louis Armstrong by Terry Teachout
A relatively short biography (400 pages not counting the bibliography and notes) of perhaps the most influential jazz musician of all. Terry Teachout--not only a good writer but also a former professional bass player who loves trad jazz and yet is no moldy fig with an axe to grind--appreciates both Armstrongs seminal Hot Fives and his later more commercial recordings.
He shows us Armstrong in all his complexity: the sunny disposition and the explosive rages, the devotion to wife Lucille and his continual affairs, his generosity to fellow musicians and his long-standing musical grudges. In addition, Teachout gives us intelligent and sensitive appreciations of many of the classic recordings. I enjoyed this book and would recommend it to anyone with a liking for jazz and an interest in its history.
9 Things You May Not Know About Louis Armstrong
An all-star virtuoso, he came to prominence in the s, influencing countless musicians with both his daring trumpet style and unique vocals. Armstrong's charismatic stage presence impressed not only the jazz world but all of popular music. Louis Armstrong was born on August 4, , in New Orleans, Louisiana, in a neighborhood so poor that it was nicknamed "The Battlefield. Armstrong had a difficult childhood: His father was a factory worker and abandoned the family soon after Louis's birth. His mother, who often turned to prostitution, frequently left him with his maternal grandmother. Armstrong was obligated to leave school in the fifth grade to begin working. A local Jewish family, the Karnofskys, gave young Armstrong a job collecting junk and delivering coal.
Take a look below for 30 more fun and interesting facts about Louis Armstrong. 1. In , he was inducted into the Rhythm & Blues Hall of.
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1. A Jewish immigrant family helped him buy his first horn.
Armstrong with his mother and sister Beatrice in New Orleans in Young Louis spent much of his boyhood in the care of his grandmother, but he also found a second home among the Karnofskys, a local Lithuanian-Jewish family who hired him to do odd jobs for their peddling business. As a sign of his gratitude to his Jewish benefactors, Armstrong later took to wearing a Star of David pendant around his neck. Armstrong with trumpet, late s. Most of all, I began to learn music.