The Louis Armstrong Discography: The All-Stars (1946 - 1956)

The Louis Armstrong Discography: The All-Stars (1946 - 1956)

There is a critical perception that Louis Armstrong somehow abandoned his small-band roots when he moved away from the Hot 5 and 7 recordings of the 20's and recorded with the larger bands of the 30's. In reality, though, he had been playing with large units almost exclusively before and since his seminal records on OKeh. With the exception of a small number of hours recording those songs, he had spent the rest of the previous quarter century playing big band music.

In 1947, however, dogged by this undeserved collar and hounded by rising expenses for his touring band, he submitted to managerial pressure to unleash a small combo for a show at Town Hall in New York City; the concert was a howling success, leading the way for Louis to tour with the now-streamlined band he called his "All-Stars." With sporadic changes in personnel, this arrangement suited him for the rest of his performing career. In the studio, the All-Stars recorded scores of tunes, often re-recording the Hot classics from 25 years earlier, and re-rerecording them again when they changed labels.

Louis also frequently fronted elaborate orchestras with white-bread choruses, doing his best with the increasingly tepid pop material his manager provided him. Sometimes he was paired with other singers -- Ella Fitzgerald, Bing and Gary Crosby, and Louis Jordan -- to produce pleasant but forgettable platters. And occasionally, he could still mold a song -- "Mack the Knife" and "A Kiss to Build a Dream On", to name a few -- into an incomparable classic.

Professionally, it was a period of mushrooming excitement for Pops, who was now frequently releasing records and appearing on radio and in movies. In retrospect, however, it was a period of musical unfulfillment. Armstrong's manager, Joe Glaser, though a master at setting up successful concerts and tours, lacked the vision to showcase his number one artist in the light he deserved. Fortunately, others would soon give Louis Armstrong the latitude to lay down his most timeless tracks.

Although Armstrong retained a loyal following to the end of his days that was appreciative of his contribution to the world of music, his place at the vanguard of the music called "jazz" was taken by a new generation of virtuoso performers playing a new music: bop. But the true musical heirs of Louis Armstrong were not really the boppers. The jazz of Louis Armstrong's music was accessible, functional music that represented freedom for both the listener and the hearer. The jazz of Louis Armstrong was created by charismatic performers playing in an individual, idiosyncratic, rhythmically energetic style and peppering lyrics with nonsense syllables. The jazz of Louis Armstrong came from not from the conservatory but from the whorehouse, not from the aristocracy but from the southern proletariat. The jazz of Louis Armstrong was derided by the establishment as noise and its sexual energy was feared by the self-righteous. Although Armstrong probably never realized it, his true musical heirs didn't play something called "jazz", they played something called "Rock and Roll".

Esquire All-American 1946 Award Winners
January 10, 1946: New York, NY

Another war-era dream team, this one headed by Louis and Duke Ellington. "Snafu" is the unforgettable track. Neil Hefti, honored as a trumpet player on the second track in this starfest, went on to be a key arranger for Count Basie and, in the 1960's, made a fortune when he composed the theme song for theBatman television series.

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Ella Fitzgerald And Louis Armstrong With Bob Haggart's Orchestra
January 18, 1946: New York, NY

With the war and the recording ban over, Armstrong returns to the studio in earnest with the first of several memorable pairings with the incomparable Ella.

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Louis Armstrong and His Orchestra
April 27, 1946: New York, NY

There may be an alternate take available of WHATTA YA GONNA DO.

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Radio Broadcast (radio)
August 4, 1946: Chicago, IL

Louis Armstrong And His Hot Seven
September 6, 1946: Los Angeles, CA

Satch jams with the small band that (with the substitution of Budd Scott on guitar) will back him in the upcoming "New Orleans" movie.

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New Orleans (film)
September 5 - October 8, 1946: Los Angeles, LA

This started as The Story of Jazz segment for Orson Welles unfinished film, It's All True (Benamou, 2007). The story of jazz's origins in New Orleans got watered down into a tepid love story - with Billie Holiday as a maid. However, what's left is a priceless opportunity to see Billie Holiday and Louis together in Holiday's only feature film.

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New Orleans (film)
September 5 - October 8, 1946: Los Angeles, LA

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New Orleans (film)
September 5 - October 8, 1946: Los Angeles, LA

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New Orleans (film)
September 5 - October 8, 1946: Los Angeles, LA

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New Orleans (film)
September 5 - October 8, 1946: Los Angeles, LA

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New Orleans (film)
September 5 - October 8, 1946: Los Angeles, LA

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Louis Armstrong and His Orchestra
October 17, 1946: Los Angeles, CA

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Louis Armstrong And His Dixieland Seven
October 17, 1946: Los Angeles, CA

A collection of songs to promote the new movie includes a pleasant reunion with Kid Ory. "The Blues Are Brewin'" took some years to see the light Of day. The final track, "Farewell To Storyville", was never released and the master apparently destroyed.

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Louis Armstrong with Edmond Hall And His Cafe Society Uptown Orchestra
February 8, 1947: Carnegie Hall, New York, NY

The concert that turned the tide for Louis in his postwar career. The second half was his usual big-band line-up, but the first half boasted a slim 6-piece aggregation that harkened the demise of the Orchestra and the emergence of the All-Stars. Although it's nice to have a record of the event, the existing recording is of fairly poor quality.

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Louis Armstrong with His Orchestra
February 8, 1947: Carnegie Hall, New York City

The second (big band) half of the concert. Great, frantic late-40's sounding charts, although Armstrong's playing is far from bop - and thankfully so. Billie Holiday makes a guest appearance on a single chorus of "Do You Know What It Means To Miss New Orleans" (a song she introduced), but Armstrong does not play on the track.

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Louis Armstrong and His Orchestra
March 12, 1947: New York, NY

The final recordings of the Louis Armstrong Orchestra before being disbanded in favor of the new "All Star" format.

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WNEW Saturday Night Swing Show (radio)
April 26, 1947: New York, NY

Radio broadcast distributed via V-Disc. "Back O' Town Blues", "Black and Blue, (What Did I Do To Be So)", "Mop! Mop!" and "Blueberry Hill" are listed here because they were issued on V-Disc (and included on the Collector's Choice 4510 CD).

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This Is Jazz (WOR radio) (radio)
April 26, 1947: New York, NY

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Louis Armstrong and His All Stars
May 17, 1947: Town Hall, New York City

An important concert that established the Armstrong band for the rest of his life. Promoter Ernie Anderson recorded the concert but a number of the acetates were not of optimal quality and only six of the songs were initially released. The remainder were released in 1983 by RCA France. Supposedly a 10-inch release from 1951 gives the date as April 24, but in the absence of any more-authoritative data, the May 17 date seems more reasonable.

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Louis Armstrong And His All Stars
June 10, 1947: New York, NY

It didn't take long to nudge the newly formed All Stars into the studio for their first recording session. The four sides they produced become signature tunes for the group, though this rushed rendition of ROCKIN' CHAIR falls severely short of any of their live versions.

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NBC Radio Broadcast Transcription (radio)
June 19, 1947: Winter Garden Theatre, New York City

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Louis Armstrong and His Orchestra
Between July 4-10, 1947: Apollo Theatre, New York, NY

A private partial recording of a live appearance at the Apollo that was probably the last performance of the Louis Armstrong Orchestra. Teagarden joins the band on Blues and St. James.

A Song Is Born (film)
August 6, 1947: Los Angeles, CA

These soundtrack numbers enjoin Louis with such legends as Tommy Dorsey, Benny Goodman and Lionel Hampton.

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Louis Armstrong and The All Stars
September 9, 1947: Pasadena, CA

Unissued recording of a live performance.

Louis Armstrong And His All Stars
October 16, 1947: Chicago, IL

Following this session, Armstrong focuses on the road and the TV studio until late 1949. The All Stars won't return to a studio until 1950.

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Louis Armstrong and The All Stars
November 15, 1947: Carnegie Hall, New York, NY

Unissued recording on tapes discovered in RCA's vaults that were mislabeled as being from the Boston concert two weeks later.

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Louis Armstrong and The All Stars
November 30, 1947: Symphony Hall, Boston

Recording to acetate disks eventually transferred to tape for release as an LP in 1951. Subsequently released in various edits.

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Transatlantic Airplane Flight (radio)
February 20, 1948

Ad-lib medley by the band transmitted from a New York-Paris flight.

Louis Armstrong and The All Stars
February 20 - March 2, 1948: Various locations in France

Many performances during Armstrong's French tour were broadcast and/or recorded, although it is difficult to determine with any certainty which of the surviving recordings were recorded at what time and where.

Louis Armstrong and The All Stars
June 2-12, 1948: Ciro's, Philadelphia, PA

This series of shows are the source of at least seven transcriptions.

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Louis Armstrong and The All Stars
September 6-18, 1948: The Click, Philadelphia, PA

Another series of shows, broadcast by CBS and WCAU at least six times.

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Louis Armstrong and The All Stars
October 29, 1948: Civic Auditorium, Pasadena, CA

AFRS "Just Jazz" programs #28 and #36. The first annual Dixieland Jubilee Concert transcribed to multiple 16" acetates.

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Toast of the Town (The Ed Sullivan Show - CBS) (television)
November 21, 1948: New York, NY

Armstrong's first television appearance. The first season of what would become a Sunday night fixture for 23 years, the Ed Sullivan Show. Hucko subs for Bigard reputedly because Bigard disliked the minimal pay associated with TV and radio work.

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Eddie Condon Floor Show (television)
November 23, 1948: New York, NY

The only surviving recordings are King Porter Stomp and Where The Blues Were Born.

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ABC Broadcast (radio)
December 11, 1948: Blue Note, Chicago, IL

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Philco Radio Time (radio)
February 21, 1949: NBC Studios, Hollywood, CA

The first of many appearances on his colleague's radio program.

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AFRS "Jubilee" Programs #337, #339, #344, #347 (radio)
March, 1949: Empire Room, Hollywood, CA

Despite the war being long over, the Armed Forces Radio Service Jubilee programs continue. Numerous cuts recorded live at a number of appearances.

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Eddie Condon Floor Show (NBC) (television)
June 11, 1949: New York, NY

Bushkin subs for the hospitalized Condon.

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Eddie Condon Floor Show (NBC) (television)
July 30, 1949: New York, NY

Armstrong's second appearance of the summer on Condon's show, but this time he's having lip trouble and can't play.

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Radio Broadcasts (radio)
August 2-13, 1949: The Click, Philadelphia, PA

An encore of his 1948 appearances, 7 programs are broadcast on WCAU, KYW and NBC.

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Arthur Godfrey and His Friends (television)
August 24, 1949: New York, NY

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Eddie Condon Floor Show (NBC) (television)
August 27, 1949: New York, NY

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Louis Armstrong with Sy Oliver's Orchestra
September 1, 1949: New York, NY

Willems notes that with the advent of recording to magnetic tape, released tracks could be assembled from multiple takes, which is probably true of many, if not most, of Armstrong's studio recordings from this point on.

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Eddie Condon Floor Show (NBC) (television)
September 3, 1949: New York, NY

Louis Armstrong With Gordon Jenkins' Orchestra
September 6, 1949: New York, NY

Pops begins to record a succession of hits, now wrenched from the jazz cradle and thrust into the MOR niche.

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Eddie Condon Floor Show (NBC) (television)
September 10, 1949: New York, NY

Harlem Jubilee / The Willie Bryant Show (television)
September 13, 1949: Apollo Theatre, New York, NY

Louis Armstrong And Billie Holiday With Sy Oliver's Orchestra
September 30, 1949: New York, NY

The only studio pairing of Billie Holiday and Louis Armstrong.

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October 24, 1949: Teatro Politeama Rossetti, Trieste, Italy

Willems lists this date as October 24, although Sergio Portaleoni sent me a note that these performances were recorded on October 27 and are issued on Musica Jazz MJCD 1087. Willems lists an October 27 radio broadcast from Rome, which would be consistent with Armstrongs filming schedule on Botta E Risposta in Rome on that same day. Westerberg's book lists a private recording of a Trieste show on November 9, but it would seem odd that after touring Italy in October, he would go to France for a date on November 8, then return to Italy for a performance on November 9. Hakenkan Forsberg sent me a listing of the tour itinerary which indicates that the October 24 date from Willems makes the most sense.

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RAI Broadcast (radio)
October 27, 1949: Adriano Theater, Rome, Italy

Although Sergio Portaleoni sent me a note that there are issued recordings from October 27 in Triste, the track list he provided is more consistent with the October 24 date in Triste listed by Willems. Willems documents his data on this October 27 session with an October 28 inscription on RAI acetates held by the Louis Armstrong House and Archives. Willems assumes that the acetate inscriptions are a day off, since Armstrong was filming Botta e Risposta on October 28 in Rome.

La Botta E Riposta (film)
October 27-31, 1949: Rome, Italy

An apparent film record of an All Stars concert. AKA I'm in the Revue, Je suis de la revue.

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Louis Armstrong and the All Stars
November 8, 1949: Cinema Rex, Marseille, France

Private recording

U.S. Treasury Department, Guest Star #163 (radio)
December 22, 1949 - January 4, 1950: New York, NY

Young Man with a Horn (film)
Sometime in 1949 or 1950: Unknown location

Uncredited (cameo?) appearance as himself

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Bing Crosby Show (radio)
January 18, 1950: Marine Memorial Theatre, San Francisco, CA

Broadcast on January 25, 1950

Louis Armstrong And The All Stars
April 26-27, 1950: New York, NY

With the advent of the long-playing record, Louis has a first-time opportunity to record full-length tracks of many of the old favorites, much longer than the three or four minutes traditionally allotted for a "single". This marathon session produced a number of singles -- generally with the song edited to fill two sides -- and two LPs, "New Orleans Days" and "Jazz Concert".

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Ken Murray Show (CBS) (television)
May 13, 1950: New York, NY

Louis Armstrong With Sy Oliver's Orchestra
June 26, 1950: New York, NY

A sizeable hit for Louis, a remake of the Edith Piaf classic. Earl Fatha Hines jumps over from the All Stars to feature on piano.

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Louis Armstrong With Louis Jordan And His Tympany Five
August 23, 1950: New York, NY

For a short time a member of the Armstrong Orchestra, now Louis Jordan - whose early R&B recordings laid the foundation for the Rock and Roll to follow -- pairs up with his mentor for two lively tracks.

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Louis Armstrong With Ella Fitzgerald And Sy Oliver's Orchestra
August 25, 1950: New York, NY

Another duet with the great Ella, and a tantalizing taste of the tremendous albums to follow. For good measure, Ella brings husband Ray Brown along with her.

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Louis Armstrong With Sy Oliver's Chorus
August 31, 1950: New York, NY

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Ted Steele's Cavalcade of Bands (episode 2.6) (Dumont) (television)
October 10, 1950: New York, NY

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Kay Kyser's Kollege of Musical Knowledge (television)
October 13, 1950: New York, NY

IMDB dates this appearance as 11/9/1950. Others date it as 11/19/1950. Armstrong was in Canada on 10/13/50

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Here Comes the Groom (film)
December 1 - 13, 1950: Los Angeles, CA

Uncredited cameo appearance.

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Bing Crosby "Chesterfield" Show (radio)
December 14, 1950: Marine Memorial Theatre, San Francisco, CA

Broadcast on December 27, 1950. A get-together for Bing's birthday, featuring Joe Venuti and Dinah Shore.

The Big Show (NBC) (television)
December 17, 1950: Hollywood, CA

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The Strip (film)
December 26 - 29, 1950: Los Angeles, CA

An ersatz film-noir featuring Mickey Rooney as a nightclub drummer mixed up with some bad folks. Armstrong recorded some lively tracks for the score in three sessions.

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Bing Crosby "Chesterfield" Show (radio)
December 30, 1951: Hollywood, CA

Broadcast January 17, 1951.

Louis Armstrong and The All Stars
January 26, 1951: Exhibition Garden, Vancouver, Canada

Released on Jazz Crusade JCCD-3120 with a review on jazzreview.com.

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Louis Armstrong and The All Stars
January 30, 1951: Civic Auditorium, Pasadena, CA

Gene Norman's "Just Jazz" Concert. One of two concerts included on the Decca CD set, "The California Concerts".

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Louis Armstrong With Gordon Jenkins' Orchestra
February 6, 1951: Los Angeles, CA

Though a copy of take 2 of IF has been released, it appears to be identical to the released take 8.

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Louis Armstrong
Date Unknown: Location Unknown

Jos Willems refers to this as a "phantom recording", and indeed its origin is a mystery. It may well be an outtake from the February 6 session. It appeared on a limited pressing of 500 copies on the private Gotham label.

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Bing Crosby "Chesterfield" Show (radio)
February, 1951: Los Angeles, CA

Broadcast April 11, 1951

Bing Crosby "Chesterfield" Show (radio)
April 19, 1951: Palm Springs, CA

Broadcast April 25, 1951.

Bing Crosby "Chesterfield" Show (radio)
April 19, 1951: Palm Springs, CA

Pops and Bing introduce what will be a hit duo recording, GONE FISHIN'. The studio tape for the single also contains the broadcast performance, indicating that they were probably recorded on the same day. A second take listed is a safety take was issued in 1994.

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Louis Armstrong and The All Stars
April 23, 1951: Los Angeles, CA

The All Stars return to the studio, almost precisely one year after their previous session. Clearly a lower priority to Decca than Louis Armstrong as a "solo" artist, one of these tracks (KISS TO BUILD A DREAM ON) remains unreleased until Mosaic's 1993 box set.

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Bing Crosby "Chesterfield" Show (radio)
Late April, 1951: Los Angeles, CA

Broadcast May 23, 1951.

Standard School Program #19, Pt. 2 (radio)
April-May, 1951: San Francisco, CA

Louis and The All Stars perform a number of songs for "Musical Story of New Orleans", a radio transcription for Standard Oil of California.

Garroway At Large (television)
June 17, 1951: Chicago, IL

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Voice of America "Jazz" Series (radio)
July 5, 1951: Chicago, IL

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Louis Armstrong With Sy Oliver's Orchestra
July 24, 1951: New York, NY

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Louis Armstrong and His Orchestra
September 17, 1951: New York, NY

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Texaco Star Theater - The Milton Berle Show (NBC) (television)
September 25, 1951: New York, NY

Portions on video Kodak 800 4582

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Glory Alley (film)
November 14, 1951: Los Angeles, CA

An odd film featuring Ralph Meeker and Leslie Caron, set in New Orleans (especially fashionable in the aftermath of Streetcar Named Desire) and named after a bad part of Bourbon Street. Armstrong is Shadow Johnson, a philosophizing guide that gets to sing and play a few songs. Teagarden had already left the All Stars but rejoined Armstrong for the film.

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Glory Alley (film)
November 14, 1951: Los Angeles, CA

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Glory Alley (film)
November 15, 1951: Los Angeles, CA

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Glory Alley (film)
November 17, 1951: Los Angeles, CA

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Louis Armstrong And Ella Fitzgerald With Dave Barbour's Orchestra
November 23, 1951: Los Angeles, CA

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Glory Alley (film)
November 27, 1951: Los Angeles, CA

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Louis Armstrong With Gordon Jenkins' Orchestra
November 28, 1951: Los Angeles, CA

The two takes of SLEEPY TIME are identical, except that the second (used on all reissues) substitutes the word "people" for "darkies".

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Bing Crosby "Chesterfield" Show (television)
November 28, 1951: Los Angeles, CA

Pops follows up a productive recording session with this appearance on Bing's show, accompanied by Ella Fitzgerald.

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Louis Armstrong and the All-Stars
December 7, 1951: Civic Auditorium, Pasadena, CA

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Louis Armstrong with the Les Brown Big Band
December 7, 1951: Civic Auditorium, Pasadena, CA

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Frank Sinatra Show (CBS) (television)
January 1, 1952: Los Angeles, CA

New Year's Day with Frank Sinatra and Satch. Not a bad way to start 1952!

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Louis Armstrong and the All-Stars
February 2, 1952: Palomar Supper Club, Vancouver, Canada

Louis Armstrong and His Orchestra
April 19, 1952: Denver, Colorado

Record label to the contrary, this is actually (with the addition of Donald Ruffell on reeds) the All Stars accompanying Louis.

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The US Royal Showcase (NBC) (television)
June 8, 1952: New York, NY

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Colgate Comedy Hour (NBC - episode 2.12) (television)
June 28, 1952: New York, NY

Program hosted by Bud Abbott and Lou Costello. Not certain if this date is correct - IMDB lists a 11/18/1951 broadcast date

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Louis Armstrong With Sy Oliver's Orchestra
August 25, 1952: New York, NY

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Jackie Gleason Show (CBS) (television)
September 20, 1952: New York, NY

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Louis Armstrong with Gordon Jenkins' and His Orchestra
September 22, 1952: New York, NY

Jenkins' orchestra is augmented largely with the core of the All Stars.

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Louis Armstrong and The All Stars
September 29, 1952: Copenhagen, Denmark

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Louis Armstrong and The All Stars
October 4, 1952: Kungliga Tennishallen, Stockholm, Sweden

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Louis Armstrong and The All Stars
October 8, 1952: Palais des Beaux Arts, Brussels, Belgium

Radio Broadcast (AFN?) (radio)
October 12, 1952: Titania Palast, Berlin, Germany

RAI Radio Broadcast (radio)
October 25, 1952: RAI Studios, Florence, Italy

Willems indicates that this recording is from either an October 25 concert at Teatro Metastasio in Prato (about six miles northwest of Firenze, aka Florence) or an October 30 concert at Teatro Odeon in Firenze. Confusing matters is his mention of another recording of a concert presumably made around the same time in Italy with a significantly different set-list. However, a pair of Italian writers pointed out to me that a CD of this broadcast issued by RAI indicates that it was recorded in Firenze in the radio station's auditorium. Archives of a press photographer show the band performing on October 25 in Prato. So, presumably, the band performed this broadcast in Firenze, then took a short drive up to Prato for a concert later in the day which may or may not have also been recorded.

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Saluti E Baci / La Route Du Bonheur (film)
October 26 or 28, 1952: Rome, Italy

Italian film also known asLa Route du bonheurin France andThe Road to Happinesswhen distributed in English-speaking countries.

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All Star Revue (NBC) (television)
December 20, 1952: New York, NY

Show hosted by Tallulah Bankhead.

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Louis Armstrong With Sy Oliver's Orchestra
February 23, 1953: Detroit, Michigan

Sy Oliver's Orchestra...my foot! This is an All Star session, with a few session players thrown in for good measure.

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Louis Armstrong and The All Stars
April 19, 1953: Symphony Hall, Boston, MA

This is from a series of shows called "The Big Band All Stars", which featured the All Stars along with Benny Goodman and His Big Band. What a show THAT must have been!

Louis Armstrong and His Orchestra
April 21, 1953: New York, NY

Another All Star recording session, with the additions of guitar and saxes, plus the temporary substitution of Bushkin on the 88's.

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The Glenn Miller Story (film)
early June, 1953: Los Angeles, CA

Soundtrack numbers for Louis' co-starring role in the hit Jimmy Stewart movie. Gene Krupa sits in with the All Stars.

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Nothing But the Best (NBC) (television)
July 7, 1953: New York, NY

Pops gets the backing of the Skitch Henderson Orchestra on a show hosted by Eddie Albert.

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Louis Armstrong With Jack Pleiss' Orchestra
July 16, 1953: New York, NY

The Jack Pleiss Orchestra is an augmented version of the All-Stars. The charmer here is "Dummy Song", a delightful Armstrong novelty.

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NBC Radio Broadcasts (radio)
July, 1953: Blue Note, Chicago, IL

Four broadcasts from an engagement at the Blue Note.

Louis Armstrong With The Commanders
October 22, 1953: New York, NY

A session including a classic Armstrong Christmas record, Pops at his eye-popping best.

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Life Begins at Eighty (Dumont) (television)
October 23, 1953: New York, NY

Radio Broadcast (radio)
December 31, 1953: Yokohama, Japan

New Year's Eve gig broadcast from Japan on NBC.

CBS Radio Broadcast (radio)
January 10-16, 1954: Club Hangover, San Francisco, CA

Ostensibly released on the LaserLight CD Louis Armstrong and His All-Stars, but the All Music Guide information does not match the CD track listing.

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Louis Armstrong With The All Stars
March 19, 1954: New York, NY

Willems notes that there is doubt about the date for this session since Milt Hinton had taken Arvell Shaw's place at this time.

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What's My Line? (television)
March 14, 1954: Unknown location

Appearance as a "Mystery Guest"

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Louis Armstrong With The All Stars
April 13, 1954: New York, NY

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Louis Armstrong and The All Stars
July 12, 1954: Chicago, IL

The first of three very productive days in the studio laying down tracks for the first set of recordings that Armstrong recorded specifically for an album: Louis Armstrong Plays W.C. Handy. There are two CD versions of theW.C. Handyalbum. The first (CK 40242), released in 1986, resulted from a fruitless search for the original session masters; alternate takes were used on six tracks, and the best possible transfers were made from vinyl for the others. When the second (CK 64925) was produced ten years later, a pristine copy of the first LP pressing was digitally mastered, and second generation tapes -- edited in the 1950's for EP issues -- were spliced in when available. The second release is the more definitive of the two. Trummy Young was able to record his own co-composition "'Taint What You Do" at the end of the sessions, and it has seen release on a Columbia album and a European single, although it has yet to make its way to CD.

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Louis Armstrong and The All Stars
July 12, 1954: Chicago, IL

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July 13, 1954: Chicago, IL

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July 13, 1954, Chicago

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July 14, 1954, Chicago

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July 14, 1954, Chicago

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Louis Armstrong With Sy Oliver's Orchestra
August 13, 1954: New York, NY

The third track is an edit of the first two, taking out the vocals.

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Hear America Swing (NBC) (radio)
August 13, 1954: Basin Street East, New York, NY

WNEW Broadcast (radio)
August 19, 1954: American Legion Park, Ephrata, PA

NBC Broadcast (radio)
August 20, 1954: Basin Street East, New York, NY

Stage Show (CBS-TV) (television)
August 21, 1954: prob. New Orleans, LA

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NBC Broadcast (radio)
August 27, 1954: Basin Street East, New York, NY

Louis Armstrong and The All Stars
September 1, 1954: New York, NY

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NBC Broadcast (radio)
September 2, 1954: Basin Street East, New York, NY

You Are There: The Emergence of Jazz (November 20, 1917) (television)
September 5, 1954: New York, NY

A recreation of the history of early Jazz, with Louis playing his mentor and former employer, King Oliver.

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Colgate Comedy Hour (episode 5.1) (television)
September 19, 1954: Hollywood Bowl, Los Angeles, CA

Eddie Fisher replaces regular hosts Dean Margin and Jerry Lewis.

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US Treasury Department "Guest Star" program #403 (radio)
October 6, 1954: Unknown location

The Savings Bond Orchestra was The All Stars. Uncertain recording date.

Louis Armstrong
November 1-2, 1954: West Melbourne Stadium, Melbourne, Australia

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CBS Radio Broadcast (radio)
December 31, 1954: Down Beat, San Francisco, CA

Ostensibly released on the LaserLight CD Louis Armstrong and His All-Stars, but the All Music Guide information does not match the CD track listing.

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Finian's Rainbow (film)
Late 1954 or early 1955: Unknown location

Backing Frank Sinatra in a soundtrack song for an uncompleted animated feature.

Louis Armstrong With Sonny Burke's Orchestra
January 18, 1955: Los Angeles, CA

A single featuring Bing Crosby's son Gary.

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Louis Armstrong With Sonny Burke's Orchestra
January 18, 1955: Los Angeles, CA

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Louis Armstrong and The All Stars
January 21, 1955: Crescendo Club, Los Angeles, CA

Released as part of Decca's 4-disc set, "The California Concerts".

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Colgate Comedy Hour (NBC - episode 5.18) (television)
February 20, 1955: New Orleans, LA

NBC-TV show, featuring Peggy Lee and Gordon McRae.

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Horace Heidt Show (NBC) (television)
February 26, 1955: New Orleans, LA

Ed Sullivan Show (CBS - episode 8.32) (television)
April 17, 1955: New York, NY

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Louis Armstrong and The All Stars
April 25, 1955: New York, NY

Pretty much a warmup for the Fats Waller sessions to follow the next day, though at the time only "Your Sleep Is Showing" and "Pretty Little Missy" (a composition by Satch and Billy Kyle) were released.

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Louis Armstrong and The All Stars
April 25, 1955: New York, NY

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Louis Armstrong and The All Stars
April 26, 1955: New York, NY

First session for the Satch Plays Fats tribute album. A virtual repeat of the Louis Armstrong Plays W.C. Handy story, this album's first CD release in 1986 was comprised mostly of alternate takes due to the disappearance of the original master tapes. Happily, though, by 2000 the tapes were rediscovered, resulting in a sensational reissue that included four more alternate edits as bonus tracks -- not to mention seven OKeh recordings of Louis' Waller covers. The final track would seem likely to come from the April 26 session, but its genesis is unverified.

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Louis Armstrong and The All Stars
April 26, 1955: New York, NY

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Louis Armstrong and The All Stars
April 27, 1955: New York, NY

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Louis Armstrong and The All Stars
April 27, 1955: New York, NY

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Louis Armstrong and The All Stars
May 3, 1955: New York, NY

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Louis Armstrong and The All Stars
May 3, 1955: New York, NY

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Louis Armstrong and The All Stars
Unknown date, May, 1955: Unknown location

This version of &Honeysuckle Rose& differs from the other two available takes from the Waller sessions, and was released on a Columbia House Party disc.

NBC Broadcast (radio)
May 7, 1955: Basin Street East, New York, NY

NBC Broadcast (radio)
May 14, 1955: Basin Street East, New York, NY

Ed Sullivan Show (CBS - episode 8.36) (television)
May 15, 1955: New York, NY

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NBC Broadcast (radio)
May 21, 1955: Basin Street East, New York, NY

NBC Broadcast (radio)
May 28, 1955: Basin Street East, New York, NY

All Star Parade of Bands (radio)
June 4, 1955: Unknown location

NBC Broadcast

Producers' Showcase - Wide Wide World (NBC) (television)
June 27, 1955: Washington, D.C.

America's Greatest Bands (CBS) (television)
July 2, 1955: New York, NY

Hosted by Paul Whiteman

NBC Broadcast (radio)
July 2, 1955: Basin Street East, New York, NY

NBC Broadcast (radio)
July 3, 1955: Basin Street East, New York, NY

Louis Armstrong With Benny Carter's Orchestra
September 8, 1955: Los Angeles, CA

Louis and (wink wink) Benny Carter's Orchestra (re: an augmented All Stars lineup). Yet another fine Christmas single.

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Louis Armstrong With Gary Crosby And The All Stars
September 9, 1955: Los Angeles, CA

A repeat of the earlier session with Crosby Jr.

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Louis Armstrong and The All Stars
September 28, 1955: Los Angeles, CA

One of Louis' hugest hits, "Mack the Knife" featured Lotte Lenya on vocals for take 5 (as well as some additional session material, all available on Sony Classical CD). Take 7 is available on vinyl only, along with the rejected take of "Back O' Town Blues". Additional edits of "Mack" are found here and there.

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Louis Armstrong and The All Stars
September 28, 1955: Los Angeles, CA

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Louis Armstrong and The All Stars
October 2, 1955: Konserthuset, Stockholm, Sweden

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Louis Armstrong and The All Stars
October 29, 1955: Concertgebouw, Amsterdam, The Netherlands

See It Now (television)
November or December, 1955: Vieux Colombier Club, Paris, France

Interview on CBS-TV by Edward E. Murrow, partially included on "Satchmo the Great" CD and LP. Broadcast on December 13, 1955

Louis Armstrong and The All Stars
December 19, 1955: Milan, Italy

"Ambassador Satch", ostensibly a live album, was a mixed bag of genuine concert tapes and studio material overdubbed with audience applause to simulate a live performance. Any release (or re-release) of an Armstrong CD is a welcome event; but, this one has to rate low on the list of crucial discs.

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Louis Armstrong and The All Stars
December 23, 1955: Windsor Palace Cinema, Barcelona, Spain

High Society (film)
January 6-18, 1956: Unknown location

Musical adaptation of The Philadelphia Story with a score by Cole Porter and featuring Bing Crosby, Grace Kelly and Frank Sinatra.

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Louis Armstrong and The All Stars
January 20, 1956: Civic Auditorium, Pasadena, CA

Louis Armstrong and The All Stars
January 24, 1956, Los Angeles

"All of Me", "Twelfth Street Rag", "Royal Garden Blues", and "Muskrat Ramble" were all recorded for inclusion on the "Ambassador Satch" album. Audience reaction was overdubbed to give them a live feel -- especially obvious during "All of Me", where the canned laughter renders the effect ludicrous. "Dardanella", "Undecided" and "Tin Roof Blues" are included on the CD re-release, although I'm not sure exactly when they were recorded.

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Louis Armstrong and The All Stars
Early 1956: Unknown

The first track has been issued on an unidentified Columbia CD; the second on LP.

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Louis Armstrong and The All Stars
March 17, 1956: Carnegie Hall, New York, NY

The Perry Como Show (NBC) (television)
March 23, 1956: New York, NY

Louis Armstrong and The All Stars
March 26, 1956: Civic Auditorium, Grand Rapids, MI

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Louis Armstrong
April 5 and 9, 1956: Palais Theatre, Melbourne, Australia

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The Ampol Show (radio)
April 14, 1956: Sydney, Australia

Radio broadcast from downunder hosted by Jack Davey

The Ford Show (radio)
April 19, 1956: Sydney, Australia

Radio broadcast from downunder

Louis Armstrong and The All Stars
May 24, 1956: Accra, Ghana

Included in "Satchmo the Great", the film documentary of Louis' world tour. Some of these tracks may have been recorded in New York City on July 14, 1956.

Louis Armstrong and The All Stars
June 1, 1956: Medina Temple, Chicago, IL

Released on the CD The Great Chicago Concert

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NBC broadcast (radio)
June 23, 1956: Basin Street East, New York, NY

The Ed Sullivan Show (episode 9.40) (television)
June 24, 1956: New York, NY

Willems has no entry for this performance.

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Unidentified radio performance (radio)
June, 1956: Unknown location

Louis Armstrong and The All Stars
July 6, 1956: Newport Jazz Festival, Newport, RI

Louis Armstrong and The All Stars
July 14, 1956: Lewisohn Stadium, New York, NY

Live concert that included a symphony orchestra conducted by Leonard Bernstein, most notably on a 12-minute version of "St. Louis Blues" Some selections included in the Satchmo the Great film and LP/CD.

The Ed Sullivan Show (episode 9.43) (television)
July 15, 1956: New York, NY

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Producers' Showcase: The Lord Don't Play Favorites (television)
August 1, 1956: Los Angeles, CA

Back into an RCA studio, recording two songs for an NBC-TV special that featured Kaye Starr, Robert Stack, Dick Haymes and Buster Keaton, as well as our Louis.

Alexander Kogan, Jr. of Showcase Productions sent me this informative letter:

It is amazing to me that not a single Satchmo biographer or scholar ever found us. Take a look at www.showcaseproductions.com, and look at "THE LORD DON'T PLAY FAVORITES" which aired, live, as part of the Producers' Showcase series on NBC in September 1957. We have much of the original production documents, including a really poignant letter from Satchmo's agent, asking Saul Jaffe if the real reason for the dealy in getting the production on the air, was that Louis was a person of color; Saul assured him that wasn't the problem, and the program went on the air with Louis.

Another interesting sidelight: We have the original NBC program cards for the series; I was puzzled as to why there was a large "X" next to the names of several performers, until I figured out that "X" meant Black -- Louis Armstrong, Velma Middleton, etc. The practice evidently stopped in 1956.

Regards,

Alexander W. Kogan, Jr.
Showcase Productions, Inc.

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