Louis Armstrong's Trumpets

Discussion in 'Vintage Trumpets / Cornets' started by optiguytom, Dec 17, 2010.

  1. JLSmith526

    JLSmith526 Pianissimo User

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    Too bad they don't have the full on specs for each horn, I'd be curious to see them, see what he changed to through each horn.
     
  2. Bflatman

    Bflatman Forte User

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    This list is disappointing for me, it lacks what I consider to be a significant instrument in his arsenal.

    Louis played on a Conn peashooter long-trumpet, possibly more than one, from the 1930's through to at least 1960.

    We know this because the characteristic underslung finger ring on the third slide of the peashooter is present on many of the pictures that remain of him.

    Check this link out
    Yahoo! Image Detail for - http://www.herbsnitzer.com/images/louis_armstrong_7.JPG

    I am unsure which models he played but the 10b 56b and 60b New Era horns have all been associated with him.

    The fact that he continued to play the peashooters long after they went out of fashion, convinces me that Louis preferred them to other more modern instruments available to him for at least some of his playing.

    I'm not saying that he played on peashooters exclusively during this period, he played on other fine instruments, but that his conns were a significant part of his life during a major part of his career, and therefore are an important instrument when considering his biography.

    In other threads the question has been raised whether peashooters have a place today. I feel its obvious that they do, given Satchmo's commitment to them, and perhaps the impoverished tonality that some associate with peashooters are more to do with an incorrect choice of a modern mouthpiece than with the quality of the horn.

    Brian
     
  3. veery715

    veery715 Utimate User

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    I believe the horn in the photo is a Selmer Balanced Action trumpet. They also had the underslung third valve ring and the valve block is further away from the receiver. The finger buttons look like Selmer to me also.

    [​IMG]
     
  4. Bflatman

    Bflatman Forte User

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    Thanks for the post veery715 but I'm not so sure its that instrument, here is a different photo

    Yahoo! Image Detail for - http://www.herbsnitzer.com/images/louis_armstrong_7.JPG

    I am seeing a brace in the forward wrap by the water keys which the balanced action lacks. Did selmer make a model with this brace?

    What I am saying is that its a peashooter and peashooters are somewhat overlooked today, good instruments and a part of Satchmo's workaday horns.

    I am also sure that several others elswhere have stated that Louis did own and play a conn peashooter, so I think its very likely that he did.

    Brian
     
  5. Bflatman

    Bflatman Forte User

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    I have just located this from the Conn Loyalist website on the 56b page

    " This picture: Louis Armstrong with 56B proves that Louis Armstrong at one point (early, by the looks of the picture) in his carreer played a Conn 56B New Era. Apparently he later switched to a Selmer Balanced. "

    The picture mentioned and referenced is a link to a very early picture of louis holding his 56b. This horn has the brace I referred to earlier so I strongly suspect that this is the horn he was still playing much later in his career around 1960.

    He also played the balanced action as you said veery715 so your absolutely right there.

    There are obviously more horns owned and played by satchmo than appear in the Museum list, I am wondering now what else is missing.

    Does anyone else have any thoughts.

    Brian
     
  6. stumac

    stumac Fortissimo User

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    Hi Brian,

    The last photo is a Selmer Balanced, it looks similar my 1955 24A Balanced, with the brace on the tuning slide receiver and the stop rod on the tuning slide. I am not sure which version he played, there were several I believe, different bore sizes and leadpipes.

    Regards, Stuart.
     
  7. JLSmith526

    JLSmith526 Pianissimo User

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    Feb 16, 2010
    The 56B was played early on, the most famous pic with him and this horn is a portrait taken in 1931 (I actually have that portrait tattoo'd on my arm).

    I think the museum list is small because of the fact that I bet those are the only horns in the museum, anyone been there that can verify? Because all of the new pics are newer it looks like. So maybe the peashooters are elsewhere?
     
  8. Bill McCloskey

    Bill McCloskey Piano User

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    Apr 22, 2007
    I've been there and when I was there they only had one trumpet out on display. I don't think the trumpet on display was actually used by Louis, but it was more of a very fancy gift someone gave him I believe.

    If you have never been to the Louis Armstrong house it is worth a trip, particularly if they are having a concert in the Japanese garden next to the house.
     
  9. Scatmanblues

    Scatmanblues Pianissimo User

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    The Jazz Hall of Fame in Kansas City has at least one of Louis' horns from his earlier career. It's been a number of years since I was there, so I don't remember what horn it was.

    Scatmanblues
     

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