“The Greatest Photo Taker”: Remembering Jack Bradley Part 5–Freedomland 1961

To folks of a certain generation, the word “Freedomland” probably conjures up extremely vivid memories of an amusement park in the Bronx, built to topple the Disney empire. But seeing that it was gone within five years of opening, the amount of folks who actually got to experience Freedomland in all its glory is notContinue reading ““The Greatest Photo Taker”: Remembering Jack Bradley Part 5–Freedomland 1961″

“They’re My Tops”: The Making of “Louis Armstrong Plays W. C. Handy”

Louis Armstrong made dozens of albums in the long-playing era but for many–including Louis himself–one stands out above all others: 1954’s Louis Armstrong Plays W. C. Handy, recorded for Columbia Records and produced by George Avakian. Earlier this month, Mosaic Records released a limited edition, 7-CD boxed set, The Complete Louis Armstrong Columbia and RCAContinue reading ““They’re My Tops”: The Making of “Louis Armstrong Plays W. C. Handy””

“The Greatest Photo Taker”: Remembering Jack Bradley Part 4–Ellington Session, Scarsdale, and More!

We concluded Part 3 of our tribute to the late Jack Bradley by mentioning that Jack didn’t see Louis for several months because of the trumpeter’s overseas tour to Africa and Europe that lasted from the beginning of October 1960 to the end of February 1961. It was on this tour that vocalist Velma MiddletonContinue reading ““The Greatest Photo Taker”: Remembering Jack Bradley Part 4–Ellington Session, Scarsdale, and More!”

“The Greatest Photo Taker”: Remembering Jack Bradley Part 3–MSG and Newport 1960

In Part 1 of our series of tributes to the late Jack Bradley, who passed away on March 21 at the age of 87, we told the story of how Jack ended up in Louis Armstrong’s orbit, courtesy of his then-girlfriend Jeann “Roni” Failows, and shared the first photos he shot of Louis at venuesContinue reading ““The Greatest Photo Taker”: Remembering Jack Bradley Part 3–MSG and Newport 1960″

“The Greatest Photo Taker”: Remembering Jack Bradley Part 2–Webster Hall 1960

After Jack Bradley passed away at the age of 87 on March 21, 2021, we knew we had to commemorate his life and friendship with Louis Armstrong on our “That’s My Home” site. Almost immediately, we realized this would be a multi-part series. If you’d like to catch-up, here is the link to Part 1,Continue reading ““The Greatest Photo Taker”: Remembering Jack Bradley Part 2–Webster Hall 1960″

“The Greatest Photo Taker”: Remembering Jack Bradley Part 1–The First Encounters

Jack Bradley passed away on Sunday evening, March 21, 2021. He was 87-years-old. Though not a household name, he was a hero to those who loved Louis Armstrong and especially to us at the Louis Armstrong House Museum. This “That’s My Home” home site and our social media presence would not be what they areContinue reading ““The Greatest Photo Taker”: Remembering Jack Bradley Part 1–The First Encounters”

“My Whole Life, My Whole Soul, My Whole Spirit Is To Blow That Horn”: 50 Years of Louis Armstrong at the Waldorf

50 years ago tonight, on March 1, 1971, Louis Armstrong was a guest on The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson. Armstrong had appeared on The Tonight Show numerous times over the years but the goal for this appearance was to promote his two-week engagement at the Waldorf-Astoria, commencing on March 2. Armstrong began his appearanceContinue reading ““My Whole Life, My Whole Soul, My Whole Spirit Is To Blow That Horn”: 50 Years of Louis Armstrong at the Waldorf”

“She Just Sends Me All Over”: Billie Holiday and Louis Armstrong

On Tuesday, February 23, the Louis Armstrong House Museum will be presenting “Billie + Q&A and Billie + Louis Panel Discussion” in partnership with Greenwich Entertainment, BBC Music and New Black Films. The event will be streaming live at noon EST on our Facebook page and will feature a dynamic panel discussion with Jazzmeia Horn,Continue reading ““She Just Sends Me All Over”: Billie Holiday and Louis Armstrong”

“Solid!” A Celebration of Velma Middleton

60 years ago today, Louis Armstrong’s vocalist Velma Middleton tragically passed away, alone in a Sierra Leone hospital after collapsing on January 14 in the middle of a grueling tour of Africa. She was only in her mid-40s (she publicly gave her birthday as September 1, 1917 but legal documents have turned up with aContinue reading ““Solid!” A Celebration of Velma Middleton”

“Dig Us”: 60 Years of Louis Armstrong at the Sphinx

Louis Armstrong remains one of the most photographed figures of the 20th century. But one single image seems to stand above the rest: Louis and the Great Sphinx of Giza. The image pops all up all the time on the internet, including a beautiful colorized version by Jordan Lloyd of Dynamichrome. But image raises moreContinue reading ““Dig Us”: 60 Years of Louis Armstrong at the Sphinx”

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