Louis Armstrong "What a Wonderful World"

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Born August 4, 1901 in New Orleans, Louisiana, in a section so poor that it was nicknamed "The Battlefield."  During his years of growing up in New Orleans Mr. Armstrong struggle with many challenges.  His father left the home shortly after his birth, his mother was a prostitute, and he left school when he was only in the fifth grade to start working. 

He worked for a Jewish family, who gave him a job of collecting junk and delivering coal, but they often encourage him to sing. 

On New Year's of 1912 Mr. Armstrong fired his stepfather's gun in the air and was arrested immediately.  He was then sent to the "Colored Waif's Home for Boys," where he received musical instruction on the cornet and fell in love with music.  After, about two years of being at the home he was released in 1914 and he started to live his dream of making music. 

In 1918 he married a prostitute named Daisy Parker, married Lillian Hardin in 1924, married Alpa Smith in 1938, and for the fourth and final time he married again 1942 to Lucille Wilson.  Miss Wilson was a "Cotton Club Dancer," and after growing tired of living out of her suit case, she convince Mr. Armstrong to purchase them a home in Corona Queens, New York where they lived for the rest of their lives. 

Before  marrying his third wife in 1938, Mr. Armstrong had started to appear in movies and made his first tour of England in 1932.  While he was beloved by many musicians, he was too wild for most critics, who gave him some of the most racist and harsh reviews of his career.  However, Armstrong did not let the criticism stop him.  He returned to Europe in 1933, where he begun an even longer trip there, but it was during that tour, that his career fell apart. 

Years of blowing high notes, had taken a toll on Mr. Armstrong's lips and following a fight with his manager Johnny Collins, who managed to get Mr. Armstrong in trouble with the American Mob left him stranded in Europe for about a year.

In 1935, he returned to Chicago no band, no engagements, and no recording contract.  His lips were still sore, he still had mob trouble, and around this time  his wife Lillian Hardin was suing him.  He turned to Joe Glaser, who fixed his trouble and within a few months Mr. Armstrong had a big band and a new recording contract. 

One of Louis Armstrong most definitive moment

Louis Armstrong did not speak much on politics and for many years it stayed this way until "Little Rock Central High School Integration Crisis" on television.  When he saw this he blew his top to the press, telling a reporter President Dwight D. Eisenhower had "no guts" for letting Fabous run the country, and stating "The way they are treating my people in the South, the government can go to hell."  Mr. Armstrong's words made front page news around the world.  Even though he had spoken out after years of remaining publicly silent, he received criticism from black and white public figures.  Not a single jazz musician who had previously criticized him took his side.  Today this is seen as one of the bravest and most definitive moments of Mr. Armstrong's life. 

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