Louis Daniel Armstrong was born on the 4th of August 1901. He was an American singer, trumpeter, and composer who was regarded as one of the most powerful jazz musicians. Armstrong’s career started in the 20s, and lasted fifty years, till the 60s. He became inducted into the R&B Hall of Fame in 2017.
His childhood began in New Orleans, Louisiana, where he was born and raised. These early years in Louis Armstrong’s life were difficult because he had a father, who worked as a laborer in a factory and left his family not long after the birth of Louis. His mother who frequently engaged in prostitution often put him in the care of his maternal grandmother.
Owing to financial constraints, he had to stop schooling in the 5th grade. He then started working for a local Jewish family, where he collected junk as well as delivered coal. Also, the family urged him to engage in singing and frequently asked him to visit their home for meals. On the Eve of the 1912 New Year, Louis Armstrong fired a gun belonging to his stepfather in the air. He was arrested immediately and sent to the Colored Waif’s Home for Boys. It was in this juvenile correctional facility that he learned how to play the cornet and developed a great passion for music. He got released in 1914, about 2 years later, and he started envisioning how his life would be as a musician.
He got popular in the 20s as an inventive player of cornet as well as trumpet and was a foundational figure in jazz music. In 1922, Armstrong went with Joe King Oliver, his mentor, to play in the Creole Jazz group in Chicago. He established relationships with other jazz musicians in this city, reconnected with Bix Beiderbecke and made new friends like Lil Hardin and Hoagy Carmichael. His popularity rose at cutting contests, and he relocated to New York to become a member of the band of Fletcher Henderson.
Louis Daniel Armstrong was also a renowned singer due to his unique gravelly voice. Apart from this, he was a talented scat singer and was widely loved not only for his charismatic voice as well as a presence on stage, but also his superb skills in playing the trumpet. His fame went beyond the world of jazz music, and when his career came to an end in the 1960s, he was commonly seen as a huge influence on popular music.
Armstrong was among the first really famous African-American personalities in the entertainment industry to cross over, with the color of skin being secondary to his songs in the US that had serious racial segregations then. To the dismay of his contemporary African Americans, he seldom politicized the black race. However, his stance on desegregation in the Little Rock crisis was clearly publicized. On the 6th of July 1971, Louis Armstrong died of a heart attack while sleeping. The tragic incident took place just one month before his 70th birthday.