LOUIS ARMSTRONG Harlem Renaissance

“I wouldn’t say I know what jazz is, because I don’t look at it from that angle. I look at it from music—we never did worry about what it was in New Orleans, we just always tried to play good.” –Louis Armstrong

The time between the of WW1 and beginning of the Great Depression was when the “Harlem Renaissance” commenced . This was where blacks excelled in culture, writing, art, music and dance. Everyone started up an appreciation for the black community especially in the music and art department. The uplifting in mainly New York began to attract the population of many races and they started respecting the blacks. It was a civil rights movement.

Before the Harlem Renaissance music consisted of mostly classical and ballroom dance. In the 1930 was introduced popularity of blues and jazz music while lead to new types of dancing as well. Louis Armstrong impacted this music world through his unique voice and trumpet style. "Armstrong's charismatic stage presence impressed not only the jazz world but all of popular music."

Louis was born in New Orleans in a troubled neighborhood in which music was how he made money. Thus as soon as he had the opportunity he moved to Chicago in August 1922 where he got a call from King Oliver and began creating recordings with the band. In 1929 he moved from Chicago to New York preforming major opportunities. Louis was a leader and a spokesmen for the black community taking a stand for not only himself but for all. He was a people person and the people loved him.

The Harlem and the Depression gave the option for Louis to play in many places during the 1930s which was the time he released "What A Wonderful World" shooting to number one the country and top ten in other country around the world. It was uncommon before the Harlem Renaissances to get the recognition Louis got which made him the man to help make charge in the civil right movement.

Jim says, "Louis had a deep impact upon my father one summer day in 1931. As a budding 16-year-old clarinetist, he was taken by the hand by several older musicians to listen to a wind-up Victrola pump out Armstrong's "When You're Smiling." It was a moment of epiphany. Life was never the same and Dad set out obsessed to acquire every Armstrong recording."

Louis touched the sole of the American people to open there eyes to what "colored" people can bring to culture, music, art, and dance. Armstrong was a role model, leader, composer, and most of all a people person. The impact he made to the Harlem was caused by his sole and love he had for music and people.

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