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  • mistermuse 12:02 am on August 4, 2019 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , Jelly Roll Morton, , , , , racism, Satchmo, , , trumpet,   

    MEMORIES OF SATCHMO (Aug. 4, 1901-July 6, 1971) 

    “If you have to ask what jazz is, you’ll never know.” –Louis (“Satchmo”) Armstrong

    • * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

    Awake at night, at sunrise, every sunset too, seems to be bringing me….

    But that was long ago, and now my consolation is in the….

    My only sin is in my skin — what did I do to be so….

    In contrast to our current culture of celebrity-for-celebrity’s-sake, today we celebrate the memory of a man who was the genuine article: a true game-changer, unsurpassed in the history of America’s contribution to the music world, namely jazz. To quote Scott Yanow, author of CLASSIC JAZZ:

    Although jazz existed before Louis Armstrong (including important giants Jelly Roll Morton, James P. Johnson, Freddie Keppard, Sidney Bechet, and King Oliver), Armstrong had the biggest impact of any jazz musician. Whether it was transforming jazz from an ensemble-oriented music into one showcasing solos by virtuosos, popularizing both scat singing and hornlike vocalizing, infusing pop songs with the blues, making dramatic statements with the inventive use of silence and dynamics, and (via his sunny personality) making jazz accessible to millions who had never heard it before, Armstrong’s contributions are so vast [that] jazz would have been a lot different if he had not existed.

    To help the reader (who isn’t a jazz buff or remembers only the past-his-prime Armstrong) understand something of the impact of the early Armstrong, I’ll close with this 1928 recording — his favorite (and mine) of his own playing:

    There, brethren, you have the earthly counterpart of The Rapture enrapturing you from the West End of jazz heaven. May you abandon yourself to the American Gabriel’s clarion call as his golden trumpet leads you to Blues paradise. Or just enjoy.




    • leggypeggy 12:30 am on August 4, 2019 Permalink | Reply

      I was lucky enough to hear Satchmo perform live.

      Liked by 4 people

    • calmkate 3:01 am on August 4, 2019 Permalink | Reply

      one of my heroes, thanks for this delightful tribute!

      Liked by 1 person

    • Garfield Hug 4:58 am on August 4, 2019 Permalink | Reply

      These are beautiful oldies but goldiesūüėä

      Liked by 1 person

    • masercot 5:54 am on August 4, 2019 Permalink | Reply

      “Incomparable” is the only word you need to describe Armstrong…

      Liked by 1 person

    • Yeah, Another Blogger 8:25 am on August 4, 2019 Permalink | Reply

      Hello there. I saw him once in concert, in a stadium in the borough of Queens, which is part of New York City. He lived in Queens with his wife. Their home has been turned into a museum.

      Neil Scheinin

      Liked by 1 person

      • mistermuse 9:43 am on August 4, 2019 Permalink | Reply

        Thanks, Neil. I didn’t know their home had been turned into a museum. It could have just as fittingly been turned into a shrine.

        Liked by 1 person

    • Ashley 8:29 am on August 4, 2019 Permalink | Reply

      Brilliant! Love that last piece….the best!

      Liked by 1 person

      • mistermuse 9:48 am on August 4, 2019 Permalink | Reply

        That’s what’s known as saving the best for last (though, in this case, it’s the best of the best)..


    • scifihammy 8:37 am on August 4, 2019 Permalink | Reply

      Excellent post and music. ūüôā
      My Mum really like Satchmo. ūüôā
      Once when I was talking about him to my kids, I called him Sasquatch!! But my kids knew who I meant. ūüėÄ

      Liked by 1 person

      • mistermuse 9:53 am on August 4, 2019 Permalink | Reply

        Glad to hear you talked to your kids about Sasquatch — I mean Satchmo. All most kids today know about music is today’s music.

        Liked by 1 person

        • scifihammy 10:16 am on August 4, 2019 Permalink

          That’s true. But I think it’s important to share with your kids things that you appreciate ūüôā

          Liked by 1 person

    • Rivergirl 10:40 am on August 4, 2019 Permalink | Reply

      Great clips… I’d never heard Black and Blue from 1929.

      Liked by 1 person

      • mistermuse 1:08 pm on August 4, 2019 Permalink | Reply

        In 1929, only a black man with the stature of Louis Armstrong could ‘get away with’ performing such a song sympathetic to the black man’s perspective. Then, in 1939, a black woman first sang this much more outspoken song that continued to outrage white racists for years, including during the McCarthy hearings of the early 1950s. Here she sings it in a 1959 TV appearance:


    • In My Cluttered Attic 3:34 pm on August 5, 2019 Permalink | Reply

      Satchmo, truly was one of the very best. Thanks for this post, Jazz. :O)

      Liked by 1 person

    • Don Ostertag 3:53 pm on August 5, 2019 Permalink | Reply

      Thanks Neil for getting me out of the funk caused by this horrible weekend. I found that playing my wide selection of Satchmo’s recordings helped me see in spite of what’s happening, deep down I agree with him when he sings ‘What a Wonderful World.

      Liked by 1 person

    • mistermuse 5:09 pm on August 5, 2019 Permalink | Reply

      My oldest daughter is a Red Cross volunteer in Dayton, helping with the human aftermath of the horrible weekend there. Words cannot adequately convey what the victims’ families are going through. We can only hope that, with time, it will become a Wonderful World for them again, although it will never be the same.


    • thelonelyauthorblog 8:27 pm on August 5, 2019 Permalink | Reply

      A great one from our past.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Silver Screenings 4:05 pm on August 7, 2019 Permalink | Reply

      Ah, these songs are a marvellous soundtrack to this gorgeous, sunny Wednesday. Thanks so much. ūüôā

      Liked by 1 person

    • mistermuse 5:27 pm on August 7, 2019 Permalink | Reply

      Thanks for the comment, SS. You inspire me to write this:

      I screening, Silver Screening, we all screening for ice creaming.

      Actually, I wouldn’t blame you for screaming at me to stop being so inspired.


    • America On Coffee 12:15 am on August 12, 2019 Permalink | Reply

      Such an amazing personality with a loving style and loving smile. Great song!

      Liked by 1 person

    • barkinginthedark 3:04 am on August 17, 2019 Permalink | Reply

      MM, i had the great honor of Louis Armstrong recording one of my songs; Not a great jazz piece just a little feel good thing. I am eternally humbled by it. Here it is:

      Liked by 2 people

      • mistermuse 8:28 am on August 17, 2019 Permalink | Reply

        Love this kind of “little feel good thing,” Tony! Although no one could do it like Louis, it’s the kind of song I think a good Dixieland band could also ‘have a party’ with.


  • mistermuse 12:01 am on January 13, 2019 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: black history, Charlottesville, Confederate statues, editorial, , , racism, Southern heritage, violence, white supremacists   


    The statues you’re defending are of men who erased my history. –Kevin S. Aldridge, opinion editor, Cincinnati Enquirer

    • * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

    Rick Borden¬†said of his son, Daniel Borden, who¬†(along with others)¬†beat up¬†an unarmed black man, “I absolutely don’t think my son did anything wrong.”¬†Daniel’s mother called reports of her son’s¬†actions “fake news” (sound familiar?). The beating victim¬†was left with a concussion, eight staples in his head,¬†a broken wrist, and other injuries. And we wonder why¬†the¬†son¬†of¬†such¬†a father and mother¬†grows up with¬†moral blinders.

    That beating¬†wasn’t the only¬†violent act¬†committed in Charlottesville, Virginia, during¬†that white¬†supremacist rally in¬†August 2017.¬†An avowed neo-Nazi deliberately drove his car into rally-protesters, injuring¬†dozens and¬†killing 32-year old protester Heather Heyer. Her¬†offense: actively opposing the alt-right’s¬†racism. In her last Facebook post before her death, she had said of her activism:¬†If you’re not outraged, you’re not paying attention.

    Last month, Heyer’s killer was sentenced to life in prison. As for Daniel Borden, he was sentenced last week. The particulars?¬†In¬†the words of the old idiom, “Read ’em and weep”:

    Parental influence: Borden gets nearly four years for garage attack

    Around the time of the Charlottesville madness, the opinion editor (a black man) who was quoted at the beginning of this post, wrote an editorial titled YOUR HERITAGE BEING ERASED? WELCOME TO THE CLUB. It included these words:

    “There’s been a lot of consternation among some folks about this growing movement to take down Confederate statues and monuments across the United States. Even President Trump has joined the chorus of laments that removing these monuments is an attempt to erase or rewrite history and rob certain people of their Southern culture and heritage.”
    “But here’s the thing that some people don’t seem to get or want to acknowledge: These monuments pay tribute to individuals who took away and erased the history of Africans through slavery, through the killing and slaughtering of innocents, through the destruction of black families by way of rape and separation¬† – all in the name of cruelty, white supremacy, exploitation and greed.”
    “How would I like my history taken away?”
    “Been there and done that, sir.”
    “Most African-Americans in this country will never know the true history of our ancestors. Much of our heritage was lost when our forefathers were densely packed into slave ships and transported across the Atlantic to be sold like common goods. Many of them died and their individual histories along with them. And those who survived….had their native, ancestral names stripped from them and replaced with the ones slave masters wanted them to have.”
    “Much of our African heritage has been irretrievably lost to the ravages and ruthlessness of callous individuals and traitors to this nation, such as General Lee, who fought to maintain the deplorable and murderous system of slavery. Now there are some who want to romanticize, revere and commemorate them as heroes.”
    “Well, excuse me if I’m not willing to buy that brand. Forgive me if I don’t shed a tear for your loss. Sorry if it ruins some quaint childhood memory.”
    “All I can say is, welcome to the club.”

    Are YOU paying attention?


    • calmkate 6:50 am on January 13, 2019 Permalink | Reply

      powerful words and so true … we must honour those who were killed and raped, not the perps!

      Liked by 3 people

    • masercot 7:18 am on January 13, 2019 Permalink | Reply

      Same thing happened to my family as they were marched from their tribal lands across the country. We lost eighty percent of our family on that march. AND, if that wasn’t bad enough, they settled us in Oklahoma…

      Liked by 2 people

      • mistermuse 9:35 am on January 13, 2019 Permalink | Reply

        Thank you for reminding us that many European migrants to America centuries ago weren’t satisfied with what they did to African slaves — they grossly mistreated native Americans as well.

        Liked by 2 people

    • D. Wallace Peach 4:19 pm on January 13, 2019 Permalink | Reply

      Thank you for this post. The racism espoused and encouraged by our “president” has exposed an ugly underside of American culture, and we all should be concerned. My husband is African American and records of his family only go back to 1865 (I wonder why? Hmm). We recently had our DNA ancestry done, and he discovered that he is 56% European! But he knows of no mixed marriages since the Civil War. To me, his discovery speaks to the despicable prevalence of rape and rape and rape, generations of rape. I can’t even contemplate the accompanying rape of children. Take down those statues, and while we’re at it, take down the statues of anyone who participated in the genocide of Native Americans, another travesty that white Americans have refused to acknowledge. You hit a hot button for me. Thank you.

      Liked by 2 people

      • mistermuse 6:07 pm on January 13, 2019 Permalink | Reply

        Thanks, Diana. I wrote this yesterday (& posted it overnight) because no one else (that I knew of) said it, and I strongly felt it needed to be said. Imagine my surprise this morning when I read today’s Cincinnati Enquirer and saw a similar article about the Bordens titled HIS KID IS GUILTY, YET ‘HE DID NOTHING WRONG’ by Enquirer columnist Byron McCauley, a black man and fellow member (with Kevin Aldridge) of the editorial board.

        As a white man, I am proud to associate myself with Mr. McCauley, yourself and other commenters in calling attention to this “ugly underside of American culture.”

        Liked by 1 person

    • Rosaliene Bacchus 4:47 pm on January 13, 2019 Permalink | Reply

      I would recommend for reading, BARRACOON: The Story of the Last “Black Cargo” by Zora Neale Hurston, published in 2018.

      Liked by 1 person

      • mistermuse 6:28 pm on January 13, 2019 Permalink | Reply

        Thanks for the recommendation, Rosaliene. This led me to check out two ‘excellent reviews’ of the book online, one of which praised everything about the book except the title. Perhaps that reviewer didn’t know the meaning of BARRACOON, which I learned from the other reviewer is “a word for the barracks built near the coast [of Africa], where the enslaved were kept until they boarded the ships.”

        Liked by 1 person

    • Richard Cahill 1:36 pm on January 14, 2019 Permalink | Reply

      Trump–worst President since Jefferson Davis.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Resa 4:37 pm on January 15, 2019 Permalink | Reply

      A sad commentary about rights and freedoms.
      Your supreme leader is wracking havoc everywhere, even up here in Canada.

      Liked by 1 person

      • mistermuse 10:22 am on January 16, 2019 Permalink | Reply

        ….and a sad commentary about Americans voters who elected him and right-wing sycophants who empower him.

        Liked by 1 person

        • Resa 6:03 pm on January 16, 2019 Permalink

          It seems to spreading around the world. I suppose trumpo didn’t start it, but he has sure empowered the right.

          Liked by 1 person

    • Eliza 12:37 pm on January 18, 2019 Permalink | Reply

      This post just made me sad. And reinforced why I don’t read the news. I know it’s important to know what goes on, but mostly it’s just so full of sad stuff. Stuff like this. The innocent being hurt. The good being bullied. And there is so much good out there too! But is it written about??? It’s actually why I love WATWB – posting something good from the news once a month (I wonder if it’s still happening or not)
      Lotsa love and light…
      Keep paying attention!

      Liked by 1 person

    • mistermuse 2:18 pm on January 18, 2019 Permalink | Reply

      I can’t say that I blame you for not reading the news. It’s not easy for a person who has their heart and head on straight to make sense of those who don’t. I suppose the only way to deal with it is to accept that the world is full of altruists, scumbags, and a wide range of in-between….and do our best to fight off the scumbags and encourage the better angels of the in-between. The battle is never-ending and often discouraging, but must be fought. Giving up/in is unthinkable, or all is lost.


    • America On Coffee 8:38 pm on May 25, 2019 Permalink | Reply


      Liked by 1 person

  • mistermuse 4:18 pm on June 26, 2018 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: asking for trouble, black 'hood, flying horse, Greek mythology, horsefly, , , , Pegasus, racism, , troubles   


    It has come to my attention that a flying horse has been spotted by the landed gentry in, of all places, the South Lennox neighborhood of La La land:

    It¬†was reported¬†that the¬†winged¬†steed is called Pegasus, although the origin of that mythical name is Greek to me. What is clear is that that¬†spotted bag of hay¬†is¬†very white, and South Lennox is very black, so we can only speculate¬†that Pegasus is either¬†very brazen, or has no more horse sense than¬†a horsefly in a Raid commercial. What we cannot¬†entertain¬†is the notion¬†that mistermuse is a racist pig for suggesting that a white horse is¬†ASKING for trouble¬†in a black ‘hood.¬†After all, we’re talking about a flying horse, not a¬†talking horse (as opposed to¬†a stalking horse, which of course IS asking for trouble).

    Unfortunately, the¬†trouble with¬†trouble is that you don’t¬†have to ask for¬†trouble in order¬†to find yourself in¬†it….even in Paradise:

    Therefore, friends, my advice to you is don’t ‘nag;’ tighten your shin chaps, pack up your troubles in your old kit bag, and ūüôā ūüôā ūüôā


    • thelonelyauthorblog 4:55 pm on June 26, 2018 Permalink | Reply

      You are right about trouble.

      Liked by 2 people

    • calmkate 1:24 am on June 27, 2018 Permalink | Reply

      Pool or horses … our ‘trouble’ is devices … we’ve lost the art of one to one communication … mind you wouldn’t mind singing like this lot ūüôā

      Liked by 1 person

      • mistermuse 8:13 am on June 27, 2018 Permalink | Reply

        “Pool or horses” —
        The better course is to pool our resources.
        In this crises, our devices let’s fling,
        Forget about horses, and….

        Liked by 1 person

    • Don Frankel 11:37 am on June 27, 2018 Permalink | Reply

      I’ve always agreed with Oscar Wilde in that you should never frighten the horses. When you do my guess is you’ve got trouble even if you’re not in River City.

      Liked by 1 person

      • mistermuse 10:48 pm on June 27, 2018 Permalink | Reply

        Wilde horsing around was what troubled Oscar’s disapproving Victorian contemporaries to drive Oscar to an early grave….at least, that seems to be the morals of the story. Fortunately for us, his works have long outlived his ‘judges.’


  • mistermuse 12:01 am on March 22, 2018 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: all-girl bands, , , racism, sexism, Women's History Month   


    March¬†being Women’s History Month,¬†and mistermuse being a classic jazz enthusiast, I’d be remiss to let this conjunction of constellations¬†pass¬†without¬†honoring women’s place in jazz history. Though I can’t expound¬†on these subjects at length¬†in one post, I’ll highlight my¬†favorite period in jazz history — the 1920s, 30s and 40s — and the all-girl bands of that time,¬†as opposed to¬†female jazz vocalists¬†of the period, because the latter¬†are much better known¬†(Billie Holiday, for example)¬†than the former,¬†and their legacy has¬†far better survived that era’s¬†male-dominated world of jazz and popular music.

    Starting with the 1920’s, here is one of the first and foremost all-girl bands of the period:

    Moving on to the 1930s & 40s….

    As the latter clip demonstrates, African-American female musicians faced not only gender,¬†but racial, discrimination — not so much from white musicians as from the powers behind the scenes and the general public….and not just in the South. The were exceptions, but the best jazz¬†musicians didn’t sweat skin color — if you could play, you¬†should play.

    There is much more¬†that could be¬†said along¬†the lines of this post; perhaps I’ll do so in a future post.


    • Garfield Hug 1:54 am on March 22, 2018 Permalink | Reply

      I remember hearing Ella Fitzgerald and I hope she is a jazz legend. Thanks for the these as I have not heard these artistes before.

      Liked by 2 people

      • mistermuse 9:11 am on March 22, 2018 Permalink | Reply

        Ella certainly IS a legend, GH. Her decades-long career started in the 1930s, so she goes back to the period covered in my post. I was fortunate enough to see and hear her in person in the early 1980s, and she still sounded great.


    • scifihammy 8:16 am on March 22, 2018 Permalink | Reply

      I had no idea there even Were girl bands! A very good post highlighting their talents. ūüôā

      Liked by 2 people

    • arekhill1 1:55 pm on March 22, 2018 Permalink | Reply

      • mistermuse 5:22 pm on March 22, 2018 Permalink | Reply

        Hmmm….if the Go-Go’s and The Ingenues could change places in time, with the former finding themselves back in the 1920s and the latter waking up in the rock era, I wonder what each would think of the other group.


    • Don Frankel 4:01 pm on March 22, 2018 Permalink | Reply

      Guess we could say this is a case of…


      • mistermuse 5:42 pm on March 22, 2018 Permalink | Reply

        Perhaps there may have been a bit of jealousy among The Ingenues over who could play the most instruments (as noted in their clip, a girl had to play at least 8 instruments to qualify to join the band), but I doubt “Anything you can do I can do better” was the case with the other all-girl bands.


    • Don Frankel 9:29 am on March 23, 2018 Permalink | Reply

      I didn’t mean to imply jealously among the woman performers. This is a song about Annie Oakley telling the man Frank Butler that anything he can do, she can do better. It is based on her real life in which she beat Butler in a shooting match. He later courted a word they used in those days and then married her. It was later turned into a musical by Irving Berlin and that’s where the song comes from and I thought it was apropos to women musicians doing what men had traditionally done.

      Liked by 1 person

      • mistermuse 9:42 am on March 23, 2018 Permalink | Reply

        Thanks for clarifying, Don. I’m very familiar with the musical and have seen the movie containing the “Anything you can do” clip several times — I simply drew a mistaken implication from your comment. But it is true that many male musicians didn’t think women could play jazz like men could. Perhaps I’ll go into that a bit more in my next post.


    • calmkate 11:37 am on March 23, 2018 Permalink | Reply

      thanks for a great post Jazz and the girl bands!

      Liked by 1 person

    • Silver Screenings 1:51 pm on March 24, 2018 Permalink | Reply

      Thanks for sharing the histories of these two groups. It’s incredible to think you couldn’t join The Fabulous Ingenues unless you could play EIGHT instruments! That is Talent with a capital T.

      Liked by 1 person

    • mistermuse 4:06 pm on March 24, 2018 Permalink | Reply

      Talent indeed — almost like needing to speak eight languages before you could be hired as a translator.


  • mistermuse 4:15 pm on May 16, 2014 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , artistic freedom, , , McCarthyism, , racism, the good things in life,   


    [To] someone with a longer perspective, someone looking at us, we’d look like a bunch of ants on a log, running around. And every hundred years, it’s like somebody flushes the toilet and the entire planet is changed. –Woody Allen

    I have lived, not¬†a hundred years, but almost as long as the 78 year old¬†Woody Allen — ¬†long enough to appreciate where he’s coming from. It’s a different world from the one I grew up in the years preceding, during and after World War II, with a culture so completely changed that if I’d fallen asleep¬†in that generation¬†and awakened¬†in this one, I might think that either I or the world had lost its marbles. Indeed, it’s like somebody flushed the toilet, and the marble in space we call earth¬†became a¬†different planet.

    Now, I’m nostalgic about a lot of things, but I’m not one of those¬†antedeluvians with rose-colored glasses¬†about the past. There have been changes for the better and for the worse, and¬†as much as I mourn the loss of¬†what was (or seemed) wonderful then, it wasn’t all wonderful by a long shot.¬†Those who “want their America back”¬†want an America that never was whole or¬†without shortcomings.

    I would love to get that America back where drugs were a relative anomaly.

    I would hate to get that America back where racism was as normal as everyday life.

    I would love to get that America back where mean-spirited¬†discourse wasn’t fuckin’ de rigueur (if you’ll pardon my French).

    I would hate to get that America back where censorship trumped artistic freedom.

    I would love to get that America back where the good things in life were more intrinsic than superficial.

    I would hate to get that America back where the likes of McCarthyism fanned jingoist fears and ruined careers.

    I would love to get that America back where popular music knew the meaning of sophisticaton.

    I would hate to get that America back where the average lifespan for men in the year I was born was 56 1/2 years. By all rights, if I’d fallen asleep in that generation,¬†I should’ve died before¬†I woke up in the present generation. Talk about exceptionalism!¬†Is this a great country, or what?

    • arekhill1 4:52 pm on May 16, 2014 Permalink | Reply

      I fucked de Riguer. I believe her first name was Simone


    • mistermuse 10:07 pm on May 16, 2014 Permalink | Reply

      I think I knew her sister, Catherine de Neuve Riguer. She ended up marrying some guy named Mortis.


    • Don Frankel 2:23 pm on May 17, 2014 Permalink | Reply

      Good points Muse. It’s good to remember your life and times fondly. It’s foolish to think it was all good and there was nothing wrong back then.


    • mistermuse 4:36 pm on May 17, 2014 Permalink | Reply

      Right, Don, although there are always some things in one’s life one doesn’t remember fondly. Anyone who claims not to have any regrets is either an ignoramus or in denial, it seems to me.


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