“The Greatest Photo Taker”: Remembering Jack Bradley Part 5–60 Years of “The Real Ambassadors”

After Jack Bradley passed away on March 21, we launched into a multi-part series chronicling Jack’s famed friendship with Louis Armstrong. After publishing five parts (all of which can be read here)–and only covering the first 20 months of their relationship–we shifted focus over to the 50th anniversary of Louis’s passing.. That turned into aContinue reading ““The Greatest Photo Taker”: Remembering Jack Bradley Part 5–60 Years of “The Real Ambassadors””

“He Made Me Happy–And God Knows That’s The Most Fantastic Thing!”: Lucille Armstrong’s Condolence Letters Part 5

We have reached the conclusion of our series on Lucille Armstrong’s condolence letters which means we have also reached the conclusion of our posts about the eventful year of 1971. I’ll admit off the bat that when the calendar turned to 2021, I knew there’d have to be posts on the 50th anniversary of Louis’sContinue reading ““He Made Me Happy–And God Knows That’s The Most Fantastic Thing!”: Lucille Armstrong’s Condolence Letters Part 5″

“His Wreath Will Never Wither and His Star Will Always Shine”: Lucille Armstrong’s Condolence Letters Part 4

To get a warning out of the way immediately, this will be an extra long post. Initially, we thought this would be the final post in our series sharing many of the condolence letters Lucille arrived after Louis passed away. In compiling this series, we mainly stuck to the scrapbooks Phoebe Jacobs helped assemble forContinue reading ““His Wreath Will Never Wither and His Star Will Always Shine”: Lucille Armstrong’s Condolence Letters Part 4″

“Louis Still With Us Forever”: Lucille Armstrong’s Condolence Letters Part 3

This is the third part in a series of posts devoted to sharing selections of the tens of thousands of condolence letters Lucille Armstrong received after Louis passed away on July 6, 1971 (here are links to Part 1 and Part 2). We’ve shared letters from prominent politicians, entertainers and musicians already; today’s post willContinue reading ““Louis Still With Us Forever”: Lucille Armstrong’s Condolence Letters Part 3″

“God, How I Loved That Man”: Lucille Armstrong’s Condolence Letters Part 2

Last week, we began a new series of posts sharing some of the thousands of condolence letters Lucille Armstrong received after the passing of Louis on July 6, 1971. That post centered on contributions from entertainers and politicians; today’s will focus on musicians, songwriters and those in the music business. As one can imagine, musiciansContinue reading ““God, How I Loved That Man”: Lucille Armstrong’s Condolence Letters Part 2″

“He Will Be Missed. But Above All, He Will Be Remembered”: Lucille Armstrong’s Condolence Letters Part 1

It’s been over a month since we began telling the story of Louis Armstrong’s final weeks in great detail (see all posts here) and after last week’s look at his funeral, one would think that we had reached the conclusion. But no, there’s one more component we’d like to examine in a series of postsContinue reading ““He Will Be Missed. But Above All, He Will Be Remembered”: Lucille Armstrong’s Condolence Letters Part 1″

“Move Over Gabriel, Because Here Comes Satchmo”: The Funeral of Louis Armstrong

The funeral of Louis Armstrong took place 50 years ago today. In our last post, we introduced Phoebe Jacobs, who showed up after Louis passed away to help Lucille Armstrong get in touch with the media and to begin planning the funeral. The first order of business was to have Louis’s body lie in stateContinue reading ““Move Over Gabriel, Because Here Comes Satchmo”: The Funeral of Louis Armstrong”

“A Jazz Era Ends”: The 50th Anniversary of Louis Armstrong’s Passing

Today is the 50th anniversary of Louis Armstrong’s death (though seeing how many were paying tribute to him and sharing his music this past July 4 weekend, his legacy is alive and well!). As we have painstakingly chronicled in the past month, he went out on his own terms, making tapes, designing collages, playing theContinue reading ““A Jazz Era Ends”: The 50th Anniversary of Louis Armstrong’s Passing”

The Story of Louis Armstrong’s Final Tape

[Author’s Note: A longer version of this piece was published on this site in 2020. This updated version has removed discussions of other tapes that have recently been covered in our special 2021 series on Louis Armstrong’s final tapes. You can read the entire series here.] Louis Armstrong passed away in his sleep in theContinue reading “The Story of Louis Armstrong’s Final Tape”

“That Cat Ain’t Never Gonna Die”: Louis Armstrong’s Final Collages and Last Birthday Party

In our last post, we discussed that Armstrong finished putting number “18” on a reel of “Armstrong’s Personal Recordings” but did not make a handwritten contents sheet for said reel. We also mentioned that Reel 17 contained the first half of what would eventually become Armstrong’s last tape, to be discussed here on July 5.Continue reading ““That Cat Ain’t Never Gonna Die”: Louis Armstrong’s Final Collages and Last Birthday Party”

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