The legendary American trumpeter, vocalist and the director of ensemble Louis Armstrong (full name Louis Daniel Armstrong) was born in 1901 in the Negro district of New Orleans. His family was poor and his mother worked as the laundress, his father was the worker. Soon he left Lois and his sis sister Beatrice. Since the very childhood Armstrong knew what it meant to work hard: he had to sell the newspapers, deliver the coal and perform many types of these kinds of work. Thus, looking for the job, Louis got acquainted with one Jewish family, and the new stage of his life began.
The Karnofskys, who had recently moved to the US from Lithuania, helped to Louis: they gave him job to do around the house and fed him. Soon Armstrong started to stay at their place at nights, and house of the Karnofskys became his native house. The family treated Louis with kindness and care, and due to their help young Armstrong began singing. Little by little his skills were improving; he learned many Russian and Jewish songs, which found the place in Louis’ creativity later (for example, the Jewish melodies in the famous song Go Down, Moses). The Karnofskys encouraged the boy’s music development and even bought him the very first trumpet. In 1913 Armstrong found himself in the correctional camp, where he joined the brass band in no time. At that time Louis understood that he would like to become the musician, and soon after that he met King Oliver, who was considered to be the best cornetist in the city. Later Armstrong called King his real teacher.
In 1922 King invited Louis to his Chicago jazz band, where Armstrong got the precious experience. During that period the musician made his first records, and in 1924 he and his wife moved to New York, where he played in the Fletcher Henderson Orchestra. Many jazz-lovers came to enjoy Louis’ bright solos – Armstrong managed to create his own unique style, very recognizable and based on improvisation. He made a wonderful reputation in New York and in 1925 came back to Chicago, where the musician showed his talent in a great way. That time Armstrong was recording together with the famous Hot Five (the three parts of Hot Fives & Sevens were created). Gradually he started playing less cornet and more trumpet: he chose that instrument because of its brighter and more powerful sound.
In 1929 Armstrong again moved to New York and began playing with the big-bands; his talent was recognized internationally, and the jazzman went to perform in Europe. Louis was gaining popularity; he took part in the filming and regularly played at various concerts. In 1936 he issued the autobiography book Swing That Music, where he described his life, ups and downs and the long way to his dream. In 1947 the band All Stars was formed, the line-up of which included Armstrong himself, Earl Hines, Jack Teagarden, Barney Bigard and many others. That group attracted the huge attention, because the musicians’ skills were really great, and Louis’ solos made the composition just perfect. In 1954 Armstrong wrote his second book Satchmo. My Life In New Orleans – there is no doubt that he had something to share with the world.
In the sixties Armstrong performed more as the vocalist, recording the new interpretations of Go Down Moses, We Have All The Time In The World and other compositions. During that period the jazzman recorded one of his most famous songs What A Wonderful World. In the late sixties Armstrong’s health became worse, however he was faithful to the music till his last days. On July 6, 1971 Louis Armstrong passed away. That person, like no one else, invented so many revolutionary ideas and his creativity influenced the development of various musical styles. Without Louis’ songs the modern music would have been absolutely different. It is well-known, that for the numerous music lovers the jazz is first of all associated with Armstrong’s name. He was one of the greatest artists of the twentieth century, and due to his talent the world got his genius creations.