Not too slow, not too fast. Kind of half-fast.
More quotes by Louis Armstrong
The memory of things gone is important to a jazz musician. Things like old folks singing in the moonlight in the back yard on a hot night or something said long ago.
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I used to play a place in Twist, Arkansas… It used to get quite cold in Twist. And they used to take something that looked like a big garbage pail and set it in the middle of the floor, half-fill it with kerosene. They’d light that fuel and that’s what we’d use for heat… But this particular night, two guys started to fighting and one of them knocked the other one over onto this container. When they did it spilled on the floor. Now, it was already burning so when it spilled it looked like a river of fire. Everybody ran for the front door including yours truly. But when I got on the outside then I realized that I’d left the guitar inside. I went back for it. The building was a wooden building and it was burning so fast that when I got my guitar it started to collapse around me. So I almost lost my life trying to save the guitar. But the next morning we found that these two guys who were fighting were fighting about a lady. I never did meet the lady but I learned that her name was Lucille. So I named my guitar Lucille to remind me not to do a thing like that again.
Jazz music has got to have that thing. You have to be born with it. You can’t even buy it. If you could buy it, they’d have it at the next Newport festival.
Somebody asked me once, Do you think that swing will ever come back? And I said, Do you think the 1938 Form will ever come back?
When Hank Jones had his night off, I would get somebody to take my place as intermission pianist and I’d play the show with Ella, so I would get a chance to play with Ray Brown and Charlie Smith as well.
We made records to document ourselves, not to sell a lot of records. I still feel that way. I put out a record because I think it’s beautiful, not necessarily commercial.
If I don’t practice for a day, I know it… for two days, the critics know it… three days, the public knows it.