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Louis Armstrong: The Jazzman - Essay Example
This essay describes the career of a great musician Louis Armstrong. He is known as the most influential person on American Jazz, one of the truly American genres of music. He was also involved in blues, swing and ragtime, pop and other sub-genres. Louis Armstrong brought his music to every corner…
This "Louis Armstrong: The Jazzman" outlines the history of jazz and the place of Louis Armstrong in it. Jazz was invented by African American slaves, and the term originally meant “sex”, but eventually included all kinds of fun, and then became the name of possibly the most American music style of all time (Harker, 2011). Jazz has its roots in the work songs of American slaves and their Gospel music from Christian churches (Ondaatje, 2011). As it became popular it was added to and modified by artist from diverse ethnic and cultural backgrounds. Because of its original improvisational style, it was easy for it to absorb contributions from other kinds of music and for master of other genres to contribute to its growth (Harker, 2011). Jazz is cooperative and improvisational. It is like a conversation among the instruments, most evident in Dixieland style. Many musicians spent their lives searching for that “perfect” performance, as in Michael Ondaatje’s. Coming Through Slaughter (Ondaatje, 2011) the story of Buddy Bolden who, when he found it, he “blew out his lip” and never played again. (Blowing out one’s lip means he cannot play again. It is like trying to pitch baseball with a badly healed broken elbow.)
It was very difficult to select one piece to represent this artist, but if we go back to his roots we can see the development of New Orleans Style jazz for which he was noted. There is a song that he and his second wife, Lillian Hardin Armstrong, wrote and recorded for Decca in 1940. ...