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As I grew up around Liberty and Perdido I observed everything and everybody.

I loved all these people and they loved me. The good ones and the bad ones all

thought that Little Louis (as they called me) was O.K. I stayed in my place.

 

 

 Satchmo CDs

Best Of Ella Fitzgerald & Louis Armstrong  /  Louis Armstrong - All-Time Greatest Hits  /  The Hot Fives & Sevens  

 The Definitive Collection / The Essential Louis Armstrong

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Satchmo: My Life in New Orleans 

By Louis Armstrong

 

Learning Jim Crow

It was my first experience with Jim Crow. I was just five, and I had never ridden on a street car before. Since I was the first to get on, I walked right up to the front of the car without noticing the signs on the back of the seats on both sides, which read: FOR COLORED PASSENGERS ONLY. Thinking the woman was following me, I sat down in one of the front seats. However, she did not join me, and when I turned to see what had happened there was no lady. Looking all the way to the back of the car, I saw her waving to me frantically. "Come here, boy," she cried. "Sit where you belong."

The Humor of Jim Crow

There is something funny about those signs on the street cars in New Orleans. We colored folks used to get real kicks out of them when we got on a car at the picnic grounds or at Canal Street on a Sunday evening when we outnumbered the white folks. Automatically, we took the whole car over, sitting as far up front as we wanted to. It felt good to sit up there once in a while. We felt a little more important than usual. I can't explain why exactly, but maybe it was because we weren't supposed to be up there.

Respecting Everything and Everybody

As I grew up around Liberty and Perdido I observed everything and everybody. I loved all these people and they loved me. The good ones and the bad ones all thought that Little Louis (as they called me) was O.K. I stayed in my place. I respected everybody and I was never rude or sassy. Mayann [his mother] and grandmother taught me that. of course my father did not have time to teach me anything; he was too busy chasing chippies.

Learning the People's Language

On the night my mother and I went out cabareting we went first to Savocas' honky-tonk at Saratoga and Poydras Streets. This was the headquarters and also the pay office for the men working on those boats. And many times I went right in to the gambling table and lost my whole pay. But I didn't care -- I wanted to be around the older fellows, the good old hustlers, pimps and musicians. I like their language somehow.

Source:  Satchmo: My Life in New Orleans 

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Satchmo: My Life in New Orleans 

By Louis Armstrong

"In all my whole career the Brick House was one of the toughest joints I ever played in. It was the honky-tonk where levee workers would congregate every Saturday night and trade with the gals who'd stroll up and down the floor and the bar. Those guys would drink and fight one another like circle saws. Bottles would come flying over the bandstand like crazy, and there was lots of just plain common shooting and cutting. But somehow all that jive didn't faze me at all, I was so happy to have some place to blow my horn." So says Louis Armstrong about just one of the places he grew up in, a tough kid who also happened to be a musical genius. This story of his early life, concluding with his departure to Chicago to play with his boyhood idol King Oliver, is a fascinating document.

Contrary to popular belief, it turns out that life in New Orleans was an amazingly eventful and a basically happy experience for Louis Armstrong-and he ought to know-for in no other city in the world at the time could a boy discover and learn about the music that he loved, for this was New Orleans, and he was Louis Armstrong.

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Louis Armstrong West End Blues—The Complete Hot Five and Hot Seven—Kalamu ya Salaam—This is the big bang, the origin of modern jazz. Before Louis Armstrong jazz music was mainly about ensemble work featuring piano players and/or bandleaders, particularly Jelly Roll Morton but also others such as Fletcher Henderson, James P. Johnson, Willie “The Lion” Smith, and the up-and-coming Duke Ellington. But from 1921 when Armstrong went to Chicago, a major change was in the making.

By the time Armstrong went to New York to join Fletcher Henderson in 1924 people were coming out specifically to hear an amazing soloist. Satchmo was the preeminent personality in the music, but even so, no one was quite prepared for what Pops accomplished with a series of recordings known as the Hot Five and Hot Seven sessions.What did Pops do that was so different?

He established the blues as a basic foundation for modern jazz. He elevated the role of the soloists, not just himself as a feature in front of an orchestra, but rather Pops created a band of individual soloists, which was a radical departure from the collective improvisation of traditional New Orleans music and also from the heavily orchestrated arrangements of dance bands. He established scat singing and created a new style for American vocalists emphasizing rhythmic inflections and melodic variation rather than straight, operatic-like singing.

He introduced sophisticated harmonic improvisation with the soloist making on-the-spot variations. He established the trumpet as “the” major solo instrument in jazz and it would not be until the arrival of Charlie Parker that the trumpet’s reign would be challenged. Pick up any major book on the history of jazz and you will read ecstatic paeans about “West End Blues” (from Complete Hot Five – Volume 3). The opening fanfare alone is enough to establish the song as a masterpiece, but check also how Pops reverses the tradition of horn obbligatos behind a lead vocalist.—more Kalamu

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Louis Armstrong (August 4, 1901 – July 6, 1971), nicknamed Satchmo or Pops, was an American jazz trumpeter and singer from New Orleans, Louisiana. Coming to prominence in the 1920s as an "inventive" cornet and trumpet player, Armstrong was a foundational influence in jazz, shifting the music's focus from collective improvisation to solo performance. With his instantly recognizable deep and distinctive gravelly voice, Armstrong was also an influential singer, demonstrating great dexterity as an improviser, bending the lyrics and melody of a song for expressive purposes. He was also greatly skilled at scat singing (vocalizing using sounds and syllables instead of actual lyrics).—wikipedia

Satchmo, the Documentary—Forty years ago (July 2011, the world lost one of the most influential musicians of all time. Dipper. Satchmo. Pops. The great Louis Armstrong, with his creative cornet and trumpet mastery, his distinctively gravelly voice and his remarkable stage charisma, not only revolutionized the American public’s relationship with jazz, but was also one of the first African-American entertainers equally revered by black and white audiences in a severely racially divided country. He codified the art of jazz improvisation and shaped the course of musical creativity for generations to come, his influence permeating a multitude of genres, eras, styles and subcultures.brainpickings

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Trumpet Dreams—Kalamu ya Salaam—2006— Somewhere in America a young person looks at a trumpet. Ok, maybe they are not actually looking at a physical instrument. Maybe they are dreaming about a trumpet. Dreaming about playing a trumpet—the bell held high, gleaming in the sun, and people are dancing, and laughing, and shouting. Every riff played brings joy. Every move the dancers make in response, inspires our musician to higher heights of trumpetry. . . .

If this mythical kid dreaming of trumpet glory had studied the music, he certainly knew that King Oliver was the next trumpet great. Oliver traveled across the then new land called America, coast to coast. One of the iconic photographs of King Oliver and band was taken on the sidewalks of San Francisco. Coming rather early in the era of recordings, most of what comes down to us is but a pale sliver of sound compared to the reputation of the king, whose most lasting claim to fame was as a teacher and father figure for someone often considered the greatest jazz musician of all time: “Louis Satchelmouth” Armstrong.

Over the course of a long, long career that included hits in the 1950s, Armstrong grew to be affectionately known as “Pops” because he shouldered the responsibility of caring for and about at least three generations of jazz musicians. While Pop’s artistry as a trumpeter and vocalist will last as long as American culture lasts, what most of his fellow musicians valued most was the unstinting support he offered, including but not limited to, gifts of money when someone was down on their luck.

photo left: Herman Leonard

For the first half of the 20th century, you couldn’t get no bigger than Pops, couldn’t be more loved, or more welcomed worldwide. So when our kid is dreaming, undoubtedly the youngster envisions becoming as renown and loved as Pops was.

Armstrong’s shadow was so big that although he came along before the Harlem Renaissance, and although there were numerous other great jazz trumpeters including Bunk Johnson, who like Bolden came from the countryside, or Henry Red Allen (from Algiers, which is the part of New Orleans located on the west bank of the river), or Joe Newman, a stalwart of the Basie band, few knew that Joe was a New Orleans trumpeter, all of the brass men such as the aforementioned and many others notwithstanding, they were all dwarfed by the towering eminence of Louis Armstrong.

Within jazz in general there would be no serious challenge to Armstrong’s reign as the trumpet king until the meteoric rise of Dizzy Gillespie and the marathonic consistency of Miles Davis, both of whom would be eclipsed by another young man with a horn, another product of the New Orleans dream: Wynton Marsalis.—more Wordup

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More New Orleans Music

Buddy Bolden was a lover of music

The Great Buddy BoldenBuddy Bolden Blues

Part of a recording of an interview of Jelly Roll Morton by Alan Lomax in 1938. Jazz history archive material. Jelly sings and plays Buddy Bolden Blues, and tells of his experiences watching Buddy in New Orleans, and talks about the great Buddy Bolden. "Buddy was the blowinest man since Gabriel!".

Buddy Bolden Story with Wynton Marsalis

Jelly Roll Morton—Buddy Bolden's Blues

Jelly Roll Morton playing and singing his composition of "Buddy Bolden's Blues"

Buddy Bolden’s Blues

                      Lyrics by Jelly Roll Morton.

I thought I heard Buddy Bolden say
You nasty, you dirtytake it away
You terrible, you awfultake it away
I thought I heard him say

I thought I heard Buddy Bolden shout
Open up that window and let that bad air out
Open up that window, and let the foul air out
I thought I heard Buddy Bolden say

I thought I heard Judge Fogarty say

Thirty days in the markettake him away

Get him a good broom to sweep withtake him away

I thought I heard him say

 

I thought I heard Frankie Dusen shout

Gal, give me that moneyI’m gonna beat it out

I mean give me that money, like I explain you, or I’m gonna beat it out

I thought I heard Frankie Dusen say

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Let That Bad Air Out: Buddy Bolden's Last Parade

A Novel in Linocut by Stefan Rerg

In a series of brilliantly rendered linocut relief prints, Berg tells the story of Buddy Bolden, a New Orleans jazz musician living from 1877 to 1931. Each crisp image masterfully succeeds in evoking a feeling of the fluidity of the music, the boisterousness of the community, and the darkness of the events surrounding the musician's demise. An introduction by Donald M. Marquis, author of In Search of Buddy Bolden: First Man of Jazz, and an afterword by renowned artist, George A. Walker, round out this collection.

Fans of the graphic novel genre and enthusiasts of linocut relief printmaking will surely be pleased with Let That Bad Air Out: Buddy Bolden's Last Parade. Highly recommended. Stefan Berg revives the wordless graphic novel in his portrait of he `first man of jazz'. Very little is known of Buddy Bolden. His music was never recorded and there is only one existing photograph, yet he is considered to be the first bandleader to play the improvised music that has since become known as jazz.

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Katrina New Orleans Flood Index

What's Going On by the Dirty Dozen Brass Band  /  Louis Armstrong—Do you know what it means to miss New Orleans

Kid Ory 2—Do You Know What It Means To Miss New Orleans

Fats Domino—Do You Know What It Means, To Miss New Orleans

Billie Holiday—Do You Know What It Means To Miss New Orleans?

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Billie Holiday—Do You Know What It Means To Miss New Orleans

Performed by Billie Holiday & Louis Armstrong (New Orleans 1947)

Music by Louis Alter, Arthur Lubin,  Zutty Singleton, Barney Bigard,

Kid Ory, Bud Scott, Red Callender & Charlie Beal

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Do You Know What It Means To Miss New Orleans?

                                                              Lyrics by Eddie Delange.

Do you know what is means to miss New Orleans?
And miss it each night and day
I know I'm not wrong the feeling's getting stronger
The longer I stay away
Miss the moist covered vines, the tall sugar pines
Where mocking birds used to sing
And I'd like to see the lazy Mississippi... a hurrying into spring

The Mardi Gras memories of creole tunes that filled the air
I dream of oleanders in June
And soon I'm wishing that I was there

Do you know what it means to miss New Orleans?
When that's where you left your heart
And there's something more
I miss the one I care for
More than I miss New Orleans

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Dianne Reeves—Do You Know What It Means To Miss New Orleans?

Aaron Neville—Do You Know What It Means To Miss New Orleans

Sweet Home New Orleans—Dr. John

James Rivers—New Orleans Zulu Lundi Gras JAZZ

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AALBC.com's 25 Best Selling Books


 

Fiction

#1 - Justify My Thug by Wahida Clark
#2 - Flyy Girl by Omar Tyree
#3 - Head Bangers: An APF Sexcapade by Zane
#4 - Life Is Short But Wide by J. California Cooper
#5 - Stackin' Paper 2 Genesis' Payback by Joy King
#6 - Thug Lovin' (Thug 4) by Wahida Clark
#7 - When I Get Where I'm Going by Cheryl Robinson
#8 - Casting the First Stone by Kimberla Lawson Roby
#9 - The Sex Chronicles: Shattering the Myth by Zane

#10 - Covenant: A Thriller  by Brandon Massey

#11 - Diary Of A Street Diva  by Ashley and JaQuavis

#12 - Don't Ever Tell  by Brandon Massey

#13 - For colored girls who have considered suicide  by Ntozake Shange

#14 - For the Love of Money : A Novel by Omar Tyree

#15 - Homemade Loves  by J. California Cooper

#16 - The Future Has a Past: Stories by J. California Cooper

#17 - Player Haters by Carl Weber

#18 - Purple Panties: An Eroticanoir.com Anthology by Sidney Molare

#19 - Stackin' Paper by Joy King

#20 - Children of the Street: An Inspector Darko Dawson Mystery by Kwei Quartey

#21 - The Upper Room by Mary Monroe

#22 – Thug Matrimony  by Wahida Clark

#23 - Thugs And The Women Who Love Them by Wahida Clark

#24 - Married Men by Carl Weber

#25 - I Dreamt I Was in Heaven - The Rampage of the Rufus Buck Gang by Leonce Gaiter

Non-fiction

#1 - Malcolm X: A Life of Reinvention by Manning Marable
#2 - Confessions of a Video Vixen by Karrine Steffans
#3 - Dear G-Spot: Straight Talk About Sex and Love by Zane
#4 - Letters to a Young Brother: MANifest Your Destiny by Hill Harper
#5 - Peace from Broken Pieces: How to Get Through What You're Going Through by Iyanla Vanzant
#6 - Selected Writings and Speeches of Marcus Garvey by Marcus Garvey
#7 - The Ebony Cookbook: A Date with a Dish by Freda DeKnight
#8 - The Isis Papers: The Keys to the Colors by Frances Cress Welsing
#9 - The Mis-Education of the Negro by Carter Godwin Woodson

#10 - John Henrik Clarke and the Power of Africana History  by Ahati N. N. Toure

#11 - Fail Up: 20 Lessons on Building Success from Failure by Tavis Smiley

#12 -The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness by Michelle Alexander

#13 - The Black Male Handbook: A Blueprint for Life by Kevin Powell

#14 - The Other Wes Moore: One Name, Two Fates by Wes Moore

#15 - Why Men Fear Marriage: The Surprising Truth Behind Why So Many Men Can't Commit  by RM Johnson

#16 - Black Titan: A.G. Gaston and the Making of a Black American Millionaire by Carol Jenkins

#17 - Brainwashed: Challenging the Myth of Black Inferiority by Tom Burrell

#18 - A New Earth: Awakening to Your Life's Purpose by Eckhart Tolle

#19 - John Oliver Killens: A Life of Black Literary Activism by Keith Gilyard

#20 - Alain L. Locke: The Biography of a Philosopher by Leonard Harris

#21 - Age Ain't Nothing but a Number: Black Women Explore Midlife by Carleen Brice

#22 - 2012 Guide to Literary Agents by Chuck Sambuchino
#23 - Chicken Soup for the Prisoner's Soul by Tom Lagana
#24 - 101 Things Every Boy/Young Man of Color Should Know by LaMarr Darnell Shields

#25 - Beyond the Black Lady: Sexuality and the New African American Middle Class  by Lisa B. Thompson

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Salvage the Bones

A Novel by Jesmyn Ward

On one level, Salvage the Bones is a simple story about a poor black family that’s about to be trashed by one of the most deadly hurricanes in U.S. history. What makes the novel so powerful, though, is the way Ward winds private passions with that menace gathering force out in the Gulf of Mexico. Without a hint of pretension, in the simple lives of these poor people living among chickens and abandoned cars, she evokes the tenacious love and desperation of classical tragedy. The force that pushes back against Katrina’s inexorable winds is the voice of Ward’s narrator, a 14-year-old girl named Esch, the only daughter among four siblings. Precocious, passionate and sensitive, she speaks almost entirely in phrases soaked in her family’s raw land. Everything here is gritty, loamy and alive, as though the very soil were animated. Her brother’s “blood smells like wet hot earth after summer rain. . . . His scalp looks like fresh turned dirt.” Her father’s hands “are like gravel,” while her own hand “slides through his grip like a wet fish,” and a handsome boy’s “muscles jabbered like chickens.” Admittedly, Ward can push so hard on this simile-obsessed style that her paragraphs risk sounding like a compost heap, but this isn’t usually just metaphor for metaphor’s sake.

She conveys something fundamental about Esch’s fluid state of mind: her figurative sense of the world in which all things correspond and connect. She and her brothers live in a ramshackle house steeped in grief since their mother died giving birth to her last child. . . . What remains, what’s salvaged, is something indomitable in these tough siblings, the strength of their love, the permanence of their devotion.—WashingtonPost

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Sex at the Margins

Migration, Labour Markets and the Rescue Industry

By Laura María Agustín

This book explodes several myths: that selling sex is completely different from any other kind of work, that migrants who sell sex are passive victims and that the multitude of people out to save them are without self-interest. Laura Agustín makes a passionate case against these stereotypes, arguing that the label 'trafficked' does not accurately describe migrants' lives and that the 'rescue industry' serves to disempower them. Based on extensive research amongst both migrants who sell sex and social helpers, Sex at the Margins provides a radically different analysis. Frequently, says Agustin, migrants make rational choices to travel and work in the sex industry, and although they are treated like a marginalised group they form part of the dynamic global economy. Both powerful and controversial, this book is essential reading for all those who want to understand the increasingly important relationship between sex markets, migration and the desire for social justice. "

Sex at the Margins rips apart distinctions between migrants, service work and sexual labour and reveals the utter complexity of the contemporary sex industry. This book is set to be a trailblazer in the study of sexuality."Lisa Adkins, University of London

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The New Jim Crow

Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness

By Michele Alexander

Contrary to the rosy picture of race embodied in Barack Obama's political success and Oprah Winfrey's financial success, legal scholar Alexander argues vigorously and persuasively that [w]e have not ended racial caste in America; we have merely redesigned it. Jim Crow and legal racial segregation has been replaced by mass incarceration as a system of social control (More African Americans are under correctional control today... than were enslaved in 1850). Alexander reviews American racial history from the colonies to the Clinton administration, delineating its transformation into the war on drugs. She offers an acute analysis of the effect of this mass incarceration upon former inmates who will be discriminated against, legally, for the rest of their lives, denied employment, housing, education, and public benefits.

Most provocatively, she reveals how both the move toward colorblindness and affirmative action may blur our vision of injustice: most Americans know and don't know the truth about mass incarceration—but her carefully researched, deeply engaging, and thoroughly readable book should change that.Publishers Weekly

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Louis Armstrong in His Own Words: Selected Writings

Edited by Thomas Brothers 

These writings from jazz great Louis Armstrong swing with the same warmth, rhythms, and inventive phrasing that made his music so popular. Armstrong toured with a typewriter and used it often for journals, writing letters to friends or strangers, and supplying reporters with material about his life. Eavesdropping backstage on Armstrong and his bandmates would make worthwhile reading for any jazz fan or historian, regardless of Armstrong's ability as a writer. But Armstrong writes well, in a style completely his own. Editor Brothers provides context and insight through short introductions to each piece. But he has a deep respect for Armstrong and has interfered as little as possible with his idiosyncratic writing. Armstrong developed a unique usage of quotation marks, commas, dashes, and underscoring that gives the writing its rhythm. In a letter to his manager, Joe Glaser, he writes ``IJust, Love, Your, Checks, in, My POCKETSOH They look so pretty, until, I hate like hell to cash them.'' Armstrong uses jazz argot, much of it now assimilated into the language, translating when he thinks it necessary: ``Here's how we were busted (arrested to you) . . .''

Of some sharp sight-reading musicians he writes, "They might read a Fly Speck, if it get in the way.'' The collection covers Armstrong's entire life, from his poor beginnings in New Orleans to his heyday in Chicago to his last years in Corona, New York. But the most compelling reading comes from Armstrong on his passions for music, gage (marijuana), and laxatives. He even signed a telegram to President Eisenhower (offering to take ``those little negro children personally into Central High School'') ``Am Swiss Krissly Yours . . .'' Swiss Kriss was the herbal laxative to which Armstrong credited his health. This collection transcends jazz and conventional grammar, revealing the humor and spirit of a legendary entertainer.—Kirkus Reviews / LettersofNote

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The White Masters of the World

From The World and Africa, 1965

By W. E. B. Du Bois

W. E. B. Du Bois’ Arraignment and Indictment of White Civilization (Fletcher)

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Ancient African Nations

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The Death of Emmett Till by Bob Dylan  The Lonesome Death of Hattie Carroll  Only a Pawn in Their Game

Rev. Jesse Lee Peterson Thanks America for Slavery / George Jackson  / Hurricane Carter

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The Journal of Negro History issues at Project Gutenberg

The Haitian Declaration of Independence 1804  / January 1, 1804 -- The Founding of Haiti 

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update 2 March 2012

 

 

 

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Related Files:    Satchmo: My Life in New Orleans  Evtushenko in Satchmo's New Orleans  Native Son: Louis Satchmo Armstrong (poem)    Armstrong's Trumpet  

Ain't Going Back No More  buddy bolden's blues legacy     Didn't He Ramble   Buddy Bolden in New Orleans   Buddy Bolden Short Story  Ode to a Magic City     

What To Do With The Negroes?      Babii Yar  Lit a la Russe