Hanging With Hyland: Introduction

This is Hyland Harris:

Photo by Corey Torpie

For the last ten years, Hyland has been an all-star employee of the Louis Armstrong House Museum, officially serving as our Gift Shop Manager. Hyland is also one of our finest docents and storytellers, always on hand to give tours to anyone who walks in, from groups of elementary school students to international tourists making their first pilgrimage to Queens, in addition to VIPs such as Charlie Watts of the Rolling Stones. 

And another legendary drummer, Steve Jordan.

As we continue to populate our new “That’s My Home” Virtual Exhibit site with more content each week, we have decided to bring Hyland in as a talking head of sorts to provide insight on Louis, Lucille, Queens, the House, Louis the man, Louis the musician and much more. In other words, Wednesdays will now be devoted to “Hanging With Hyland!”

By way of an introduction, here is Hyland talking about his background with our Director of Research Collections, Ricky Riccardi. 

In this next video, Hyland reflects on the importance of Louis Armstrong and in particular, the Louis Armstrong House Museum, in a post-COVID-19 world:

Check back next Wednesday for another chance to hang with Hyland Harris. Questions for Hyland that you’d like him to answer in future installments? Leave a comment below!

Published by Ricky Riccardi

I am Director of Research Collections for the Louis Armstrong House Museum.

6 thoughts on “Hanging With Hyland: Introduction

  1. Hello, I’ve just watch both videos! Thank you for sharing that! It’s very interesting to know Hyland Harris, as well as to see a bit of inside the museum’s organisation. I live in Quebec (my first language is French), so I didn’t have a chance to visit the museum yet, unfortunately. Someday maybe. I hope!

    I have 3 questions for Hyland. 1) As both a drummer and an employee of the museum for the past 10 years, what’s his opinion on Louis Armstrong the musician vs Louis Armstrong the singer? 2) Does he, himself, still play the drums and make music? 3) And I’m curious to know what are all the books, records and CD’s we see behind him in the garage?

    Thanks a lot to Ricky Riccardi for these posts and I hope I’ll have a chance to go at the museum one day and to see it and to meet all of you! In the meantime, I’m always interested to read your posts on Facebook! I recently bought the big 7-CD Louis Armstrong box set from Mosaic Records and it puts me in great humor like his music always does!


    Danny Gougeon

  2. Absolutely right about the lack of “random” visitors. I don’t think I am overstating it when I say that for a considerable number, it’s a pilgrimage.

  3. Hyland Harris isn’t the Gift Shop Manager: anyone who encounters him finds out immediately that Hyland is a Gift. Fortunately no one has attempted to glue a price tag to him.

  4. Over the years , did Louis have different written music he practiced or was it mostly song sheets and his mind?

  5. I have the honor of knowing Hyland from the road and from Rutgers University, where we attended Dr. Lewis Porter’s Jazz History and Research program. He is a deep and brilliant scholar/musician who, for many, many reasons, inspires me to this day.

  6. Is there a record of Louis Armstrong performing at the Madame Walker Center in Indianapolis?

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