This book is a major contribution to the body of literature on jazz of the twenties. Until now there has been no generally available comprehensive survey of Armstrong's most formative phase, i.e. the period during which he worked alongside such luminaries as King Oliveier, Bessie Smith, Sidney Bechet, Fletcher Henderson and Earl Hines. Where most writers of Jazz history illustrate the period by reference to one or two, or possibly a handful of generally recognized classics, Edward Brooks has undertaken a meticulous and exhaustive study of all the surviving recordings made by Armstrong between 1923 and 1928. Brooks writes with great authority and insight, charting along the way a fascinating portrait of the development of Louis's powers of improvisation and musicianship. The Young Louis Armstrong on Records consists of a chronological and comprehensive survey and series of analyses of every recording on which Louis Armstrong played during the period 1923 to 1928. This book will prove a useful and popular work of reference, not only for the enthusiast, but also for the more causal listener.
It has been said that America is aware that Louis Armstrong was a genius, but doesn't know why: this book should provide the answer.
Edward Brooks, currently a freelance writer, has written for the BBC and other magazines. He is also the author of The Bessie Smith Companion and Influence and Assimilation in Louis Armstrong's Cornet and Trumpet World..