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Louis Armstrong Gets The ‘Ole Miss Blues’ On ‘The Ed Sullivan Show’

‘Satchmo’ is seen with his band performing on the July 2, 1961 edition.

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Louis Armstrong photo - Courtesy: Rudolf Dietrich/ullstein bild via Getty Images
Louis Armstrong photo - Courtesy: Rudolf Dietrich/ullstein bild via Getty Images

The archives of The Ed Sullivan Show have opened again to share another vintage performance by Louis Armstrong.

“Satchmo” himself is seen with his band performing “Ole Miss Blues” on the July 2, 1961 edition of the world-famous CBS variety show. He was already a frequent visitor to the program’s New York studios, having appeared numerous times during the 1950s.

That show also featured appearances by popular singer Teresa Brewer, comedians Myron Cohen, and Rowan & Martin, and singer-dancer Joan Halloway. Armstrong also performed “Sleepy Time Down South,” “Up A Lazy River,” and “Bill Bailey.” The latter, like “Ole Miss Blues,” had him appearing with his combo, but without the orchestra of the earlier numbers.

Louis Armstrong "Ole Miss Blues" on The Ed Sullivan Show

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Armstrong, who was a few weeks from his 60th birthday at the time of the broadcast, had recently recorded the LP Together For The First Time at RCA Victor Studios in New York with Duke Ellington. The same sessions produced the sequel The Great Reunion, both releases on the Roulette label. He was, however, in the middle of an absence from the Billboard LP chart that began after 1956’s Ella and Louis, with Ella Fitzgerald, and his enormous, renewed success in 1964 with Hello, Dolly!

Listen to the best of Louis Armstrong on Apple Music and Spotify.

On Saturday (23), the Louis Armstrong House and Museum hosted its first Music Family Workshop free event of jazz improvisation, with trumpeter Bria Skonberg inaugurating the series with rhythms from New Orleans. This is among a number of special summer events at the great jazz man’s former home in Corona, Queens, NY, also including concerts, film screenings, and exhibits. On July 30, dancer Marley Lubin will conduct a free Hip Hop En Familia class for all levels.

Away from the museum, a free exhibit of Armstrong’s collage collection as a prolific visual artist is currently on display at the Red Wall Gallery, Resorts World Casino in Rockaway, Queens, until July 30.

Watch all the latest archival videos from The Ed Sullivan Show on the program’s official YouTube channel.

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