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Louis Armstrong

armstrongLOUIS "SATCHMO" ARMSTRONG (1900-1971) Perhaps the most influential figure in the history of jazz, Armstrong first learned to play the cornet in a New Orleans reform school. Shortly after his release at age fourteen, Armstrong received his own instrument and formal instruction from his long-time mentor  Joe "King" Oliver. In the early days of his career, Armstrong played with Oliver's and Kid Ory's New Orleans groups and with Fate Marable's band in St. Louis.

By 1922, Armstrong joined the migration North. He moved to Chicago to join Oliver's Creole Jazz Band, but in short time, he left his mentor to establish a prolific, independent career. From New York to Los Angeles, Armstrong worked with a number of preeminent jazz bands and Blues singers. His recordings and show tours marked jazz music's shift from a regionally-rooted art form to a national production. By the late 1930s, the Louis Armstrong and Orchestra band ushered in the Siwng Era and Armstrong became one of the first early jazz musicians to attain national stardom. Despite the shift in public taste during the 1940s and 1950s, Armstrong maintained his national position until his death in 1971.armstrong louis