Louis Armstrong Research Paper

3031 Words Dec 27th, 2012 13 Pages
Many people knew Louis Armstrong as the “first real genius of jazz”(Shipton 26). He was born in New Orleans, Louisiana on August 4, 1901. Louis was the illegitimate son of William Armstrong and Mary Est “Mayann” Albert. He was abandoned by his father, a boiler stoker, shortly after his birth and was raised by his paternal grandmother. Then, at the age of five, he was returned to the care of his mother, who at the time worked as a laundress. Together with his mom, they moved to a better area of New Orleans. This is where Armstrong first fell in love with music; he would listen to people playing any chance that he would get(Tirro). He would attend parades, funerals, churches and go to cheap cabarets to be able to hear some of the greats play …show more content…
This was a hard move for Armstrong because he did not want to leave his hometown of New Orleans, but he knew it was a move he needed to make(Tirro). He made his first ever recording with Oliver’s band in 1923 under the Gennett Label. Though, in 1924, Armstrong was given the opportunity to move to New York City. He did not want to make the move, but his wife convinced him it was best for his career, and he went. In New York, Armstrong was the third cornet in Fletcher Henderson’s band(“Louis Daniel Armstrong”). While performing in Henderson’s band, Armstrong made many more recordings, and was lucky enough to work with some famous jazz singers and instrumentalists; Bessie Smith, Ma Rainey, Alberta Hunter, and Sidney Bechet. But Armstrong became unhappy with the band because he was given few opportunities to solo and was rarely allowed to sing, which forced him away from Henderson’s band(Cogswell 18). Though he was only in New York for a year, this trip helped his talent become more nationally recognized. He built confidence, learned about showmanship, and improved his ability to read music(“Louis Daniel Armstrong”). Everybody in New York fell in love with him because not only was he a great musician, but his humor brought so much more to the performance(Shipton 26). He then returned to Chicago where he was given a spot in his wife’s band as the first chair cornet, his first time in

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