12/16/2009 7:00 pm
Join Left Bank Books and Maryville University for this special Medart Lecture Series event with Terry Teachout! Louis Armstrong was the greatest jazz musicianof the twentieth century and a giant of modern American culture. He knocked theBeatles off the top of the charts, wrote the finest of all jazzautobiographies--without a collaborator--and created colalges that have beencompared to the art of Romare Bearden. The ranks of his admirers includedJohnny Cash, Jackson Pollock and Orson Welles. Offstage he was witty,introspective and unexpectedly complex, a beloved collegue with an explosivetemper whose larger-than-life personality was tougher and more sharp-edged thanhis worshipping fans ever knew. Wall Street Journal arts columnist TerryTeachout has drawn on a cache of important new sources unavailable to previousArmstrong biographers, including hundreds of private recordings of backstageand after-hours conversations that Armstrong made throughout the second half ofhis life, to craft a sweeping new narrative biography of this towering figurethat shares full, acurate versions of such stories events as Armstrong'sdecision to break up his big band and his quarrel with President Eisenhower forthe first time.