On August 4, 1901, the world was graced with the birth of one of the great musical geniuses, Louis Daniel Armstrong. Armstrong, who was born in New Orleans, often said he was born on the Fourth of July, although his actual birth date was August 4. Either way, we should still have fireworks on his birthday. Just as July 4 is seen as the birth date of our country, one might easily say that August 4 is the birth date of American music.
Below is one of my favorite Louis Armstrong recordings, “West End Blues.” This perfect song was recorded in 1928 by Louis Armstrong and His Hot Five when Armstrong was in his late 20s.
The “West End” in the title refers to an area with night life on the shore of Lake Pontchartrain in New Orleans. The jazz classic appears on various CDs, including Complete Hot Five & Hot Seven Recordings. The following video provides some interesting information about what you are hearing as you listen to the song. Enjoy. Happy birthday Pops.
What is your favorite Louis Armstrong recording? Leave a comment.
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