Louis Armstrong: An American Genius

Front Cover
Oxford University Press, Oct 10, 1985 - Music - 410 pages
Louis Armstrong. "Satchmo." To millions of fans, he was just a great entertainer. But to jazz aficionados, he was one of the most important musicians of our times--not only a key figure in the history of jazz but a formative influence on all of 20th-century popular music. Set against the backdrop of New Orleans, Chicago, and New York during the "jazz age", Collier re-creates the saga of an old-fashioned black man making it in a white world. He chronicles Armstrong's rise as a musician, his scrapes with the law, his relationships with four wives, and his frequent feuds with fellow musicians Earl Hines and Zutty Singleton. He also sheds new light on Armstrong's endless need for approval, his streak of jealousy, and perhaps most important, what some consider his betrayal of his gift as he opted for commercial success and stardom. A unique biography, knowledgeable, insightful, and packed with information, it ends with Armstrong's death in 1971 as one of the best-known figures in American entertainment.
 

What people are saying - Write a review

User Review - Flag as inappropriate

no

Contents

1 New Orleans
3
2 Sex and Race
11
3 Growing Up
18
4 The Waifs Home
34
5 Jazz Is Born in New Orleans
46
6 The Apprentice
56
7 The Professional
69
8 Chicago
85
16 Troubles and Turmoil
217
17 The First BigBand Records
233
18 Europe
249
19 Becoming a Star
270
20 Going Commercial
286
21 The AH Stars
301
22 The Apotheosis of Louis Armstrong
311
23 The Last Gig
324

9 The Creole Jazz Band
98
10 New York
111
11 Fletcher Henderson
124
12 The Blues Accompanist
135
13 The Entertainer
151
14 The Hot Fives
169
15 The Fork in the Road
199
24 The All Star Recordings
335
25 The Nature of Genius
342
Notes
353
Dicography
369
Index
373
Copyright

Other editions - View all

Common terms and phrases

Popular passages

Page vii - THIS book could not have been written without the help of a great many people who allowed me to avail myself of their valuable knowledge and time.
Page 7 - The sounds of men playing would be so clear, but we wouldn't be sure where they were coming from. So we'd start trotting, start running — "It's this way!", "It's that way!" — And, sometimes, after running for a while, you'd find you'd be nowhere near that music. But that music could come on you any time like that. The city was full of the sounds of music.

Bibliographic information