Louis Armstrong and his Hot Five, 1926 selections

Five 1926 recordings by the original Louis Armstrong and his Hot Five:

Heebie-Jeebies (Boyd Atkins)
Muskrat Ramble (Kid Ory)
Cornet Chop Suey (Louis Armstrong)
I’m Gonna Gitcha (Lil Hardin)
Sweet Little Papa (Kid Ory)

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Louis Armstrong and his Hot Five, 1926. Left to right: Louis Armstrong at piano holding trumpet, Johnny St. Cyr with banjo, Johnny Dodds, Kid Ory, Lil Hardin Armstrong. American jazz band.

Heebie-Jeebies (Boyd Atkins)

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Adapted from wikipedia:

Recorded on February 26, 1926, Heebie-Jeebies became Louis Armstrong’s first hit, selling 40,000 copies within a few weeks. The recording on Okeh Records by Armstrong and his Hot Five includes a famous chorus of scat singing.

According to popular legend (apparently originating from a 1930s claim by Richard M. Jones), Louis Armstrong dropped his lyric sheet while recording the song and thus, for lack of words to sing, began to improvise and thus created the sub-genre and technique of scat. While Heebie Jeebies is an important early recorded example of scat, this story has been proven untrue, as scat was already in use as early as the 1910s, being developed along with ragtime music, and a few earlier recorded uses of scat in jazz recordings are known. However the inventiveness of Armstrong’s use of scatting impressed many when the record first came out. Mezz Mezzrow’s book Really the Blues recounts the amazed and delighted reactions of Frank Teschemacher, Bix Beiderbecke, and other musicians on first hearing the record.

Louis Armstrong and his Hot Five_2_t0

Muskrat Ramble (Kid Ory) was recorded on the same date as Heebie-Jeebies, which was released as its B-side. It is based on an old folksong and credited to Kid Ory, although Armstrong later claimed that he had penned it (“Ory named it, he gets the royalties, I don’t talk about it”). It became the group’s most frequently recorded piece,[1] and was a prominent part of the Dixieland revival repertoire in the 1930s and 1940s. Notable recordings include those by Bob Crosby, Roy Eldridge, Lionel Hampton, Woody Herman and Lu Watters, among others.[1]

Cornet Chop Suey, a third song recorded on February 26, 1926, became a very influential track for jazz musicians of the 1920s. Its exhilarating sixteen bar stop-time solo work and ornately phrased eight-note figures demonstrate how far Armstrong was beginning to move away from the New Orleans ensemble interplay of cornet, clarinet and trombone. As an ironic twist, when its test pressing was discovered in 1940, “recommended for rejection” was found to have been scribbled on the label! – jazzscript.co.uk and Wikipedia

Muskrat Ramble (Kid Ory)

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Cornet Chop Suey (Armstrong)

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I’m Gonna Gitcha (Hardin) – recorded June 16, 1926

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Sweet Little Papa (Ory) – recorded June 23, 1926

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