A Personal and Professional Account of the Great Jazz Legend and Rhythm & Blues Inductee Louis Armstrong

But Really…Who Is Louis Armstrong?

Louis Daniel Armstrong (also known as Satchmo, Satch, Pops or even Reverend as Bing Crosby affectionately called him) was an American recording artist, trumpeter, actor, vocalist, arranger, composer and became one of the most influential figures in jazz.

Who is Louis Armstrong?

Why Was Armstrong Called Satchmo?

His nicknames “Satchmo” or just “Satch” are short for “Satchelmouth”. There are many stories of the possible origin of these names. The most common story heard was as a boy, the young Armstrong was found dancing for pennies in New Orleans. He snatched the coins off the street and threw them into his mouth to prevent bigger kids from stealing them from him. Consequently, he was dubbed “satchel mouth” for his mouth acted as a satchel. 

When Was Louis Born?

August 4, 1901 in New Orleans, LA. 

Is He Still Alive?

No. Louis Armstrong died July 6, 1971 in Corona, NY.

What Was Louis’ Biggest Hit?

What a Wonderful World was Armstrong’s biggest hit but surprisingly was not a hit during his lifetime.

Did Louis Smoke?

Armstrong was a heavy marijuana user for much of his life. In fact, he described marijuana as “a thousand times better than whiskey”. President Nixon (a fan of Armstrong) saw Louis at the airport about to go through customs. So the President told Armstrong that ambassadors don’t go through customs. Nixon offered to carry his bags. Satchmo was grateful and gladly accepted his offer. Unfortunately, the President did not know that Louis’ suitcase had three pounds of marijuana in it.

What Were Some of Louis’ Grammy Awards?

  • Hall of Fame (2010, 2008, 2007)
  • Lifetime Achievement Award (1972)
  • Best Vocal Male Performance Hello Dolly (1965)

Who Does The Best Louis Armstrong Voice Impressions?

John Redmon of Colorado Springs, CO hands down is one of the best Louis Armstrong impersonators around today. From singing telegrams and sound recordings to live concerts and cameo appearances. He’s the real deal. When you hear him, you will truly believe that Satchmo lives!

True or False? Louis Armstrong Had Experience As A Pimp?

Surprisingly, the answer is “True”! Around the tender age of fifteen, Louis pimped for a prostitute named Nootsy. However that relationship failed after she stabbed him in the shoulder.

Who Else Did Louis Record With?

The All Stars, Ella Fitzgerald, Oscar Peterson, Duke Ellington and Dave Brubeck.

Armstrong and the Harlem Renaissance Period

In the 1920s, Louis made a big impact during the Harlem Renaissance in the world of jazz.

What Was Louis’ Net Worth?

When Louis died, his net worth was $10M.

Was Satchmo Ever Married?

Yes. Louis Armstrong was married four times.

  • Lucille Wilson (1942-1971)
  • Alpha Smith (1938-1942)
  • Lil Hardin Armstrong (1924-1938)
  • Daisy Parker (1918-1923)

Did Armstrong Have Any Children?

Satchmo’s marriages never produced any children. However, in 2012, a 57-year-old Sharon Preston-Folta made a claim to be Armstrong’s daughter from an affair between Armstrong and Lucille Preston, a Cotton Club dancer.

Who Wrote What a Wonderful World?

George Weiss and Robert Thiele

Give Me The Words To What a Wonderful World

I see trees of green, red roses too
I see them bloom for me and you
And I think to myself what a wonderful world

I see skies of blue and clouds of white
The bright blessed day, the dark sacred night
And I think to myself what a wonderful world

The colors of the rainbow so pretty in the sky
Are also on the faces of people going by
I see friends shaking hands saying how do you do
They’re really saying I love you

I hear babies crying, I watch them grow
They’ll learn much more than I’ll never know
And I think to myself what a wonderful world
Yes I think to myself what a wonderful world

I Need The Piano Chords To Wonderful World

Find the chords on this link.

What Was The Original Key of Wonderful World?

The key of F major.

Where Can I Find Sheet Music To Wonderful World?

A highly-recommended version of Wonderful World arranged by Thomas Dawson, Jr. is found here.

Is There A Jazz Version To Wonderful World?

This nostalgic tune What a Wonderful World was filmed as vintage footage (black and white) in downtown Colorado Springs at the enticing Gold Room. To say the least, Redmon and Dawson are inescapable sights arrayed in their tuxedos and infectious smiles. With just a microphone and piano in plain sight, these gentlemen deliver this American classic with a touch of class and a hint of jazz. Enjoy by watching here.

What Was The Best Tribute Album to Louis Armstrong?

Honoring Louis Armstrong is the best album to date to pay tribute to such a music icon and jazz legend as Louis Armstrong. Album was notably produced by music director of the legendary Commodores, Thomas Dawson, Jr. Louis Armstrong Impressionist John Redmon takes center stage for a musical experience that travels first class back in time. Songs include: What a Wonderful World, Summertime (a duet with Hollywood actress and jazz singer Linda Purl), an electrifying When the Saints (Medley) featuring Fresh Start Baptist Church Male Chorus and Smile (a duet with the late Charles Buie) and the biggest song on the record with over 1M video views, the cover to Lennon’s Imagine. As a matter of fact, see what others are saying about Honoring Louis Armstrong. Album reviews are here.

Louis Armstrong, The Beatles and Hello Dolly

At age 62, Armstrong soared to the top of the charts to #1 with Hello Dolly… displacing two songs of The Beatles. Ultimately, Armstrong became the oldest musician in American history to have a number one song.

What Did Duke Ellington Say About Louis Armstrong?

“He was born poor, died rich, and never hurt anyone along the way.”

Did Louis Armstrong and Mahalia Jackson Sing Together?

The two never recorded together. However Armstrong and Jackson both appeared on stage live at the Newport Jazz Festival in 1970 singing Just a Closer Walk With Thee. A version of the song appears on the album Honoring Louis Armstrong as Just a Closer Walk With Thee Medley which includes What a Friend We Have in Jesus. Sheet music of this version is also available here.

Louis Armstrong Just a Closer Walk With Thee?

Louis Armstrong and The Dukes of Dixieland recorded Just a Closer Walk With Thee at Webster Hall in NYC in 1960 as a dirge (funeral song).

What Does Louis Armstrong and CeCe Winans Have in Common? 

Probably not too much. However, Louis Armstrong Impressionist John Redmon and CeCe Winans both have Jack Fascinato and Ernest J. Ford’s Blessed Assurance in common. The two take the re-made hymn Blessed Assurance scanting down Sweet Jazz Highway and through the Big Band Tunnel to deliver a rendition of this infectious tune to the unexpecting world. Listen to Redmon’s Blessed Assurance hereBlessed Assurance backing track here and download Blessed Assurance sheet music here.

How Did Louis Armstrong Impressionist John Redmon Get His Voice? 

The video tells the story. Could it be fiction or could it be true? Watch Now


More Fun Louis Facts to Come!

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