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Louis Armstrong Essay

1009 words - 5 pages


Louis Armstrong American Jazz Icon

Louis Armstrong (1901-1971) one of the renown fathers of American jazz music. One cannot think of American jazz and not think of the huge smile and the puffy cheeks of the one affectionately called “Satchmo”. Few can hear the songs “Hello Dolly!” (Jerry Herman and Michael Stewart – 20th Century fox 1964) and “What a Wonderful World” (Geroge Weiss & Bob Theile 1968) not hear the deep raspy voice of this beloved icon. With his incredible energy and joy for life, few would believe his humble and heartbreaking beginnings. What made him famous was his inner strength, drive, openness and the ability to learn from others.

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Armstrong’s social environment was one of economic hardship and racial tensions. Like many black men of his day he had to work at a very young age, preventing him from getting a formal education. It was expected of black men from the slums to join a gang and get involved with delinquent behavior.

While others saw Louis Armstrong as a young colored man from poverty stricken and violent slum, he saw himself as a person of value. This sense of value was instilled in him by those who helped form his early years. In his own wards he advised that his father played no beneficial role in his life. In his book Satchmo (???) “My father did not have time to teach me anything: he was too busy chasing chippie (women).” His mother played no role in his life during his first few formative years. His sense of morals and discipline would come at the hand of his grandmother Josephine, the church and the waif school. His sense of hard work came from helping his grandmother deliver laundry. In the waif house Armstrong was taught discipline and music.

Armstrong recognized his responsibilities to help put bread on the table. Though he did not know his natural parents well as a youth he learned from his grandmother to be industrious. He learned from the church environment the need for joy and to make others feel happy by using ones talents. While his environment prevented him from being a well educated man, his nurturing received from his grandmother and later on his mentor Peter Davis.

Through out the years racism and criticism would befall this talented artist. But everyone agreed that he was a born to succeed and make others happy.

o    Select two different theories of personality and apply them to your selected figure, and answer the following question: How does each theory differ in terms of how it explains the individual's unique patterns or traits?

Cognitive – social theory- theory identifies human behavior as an interaction of personal factors, behavior, and the environment. The interaction between the person and behavior involves the influences of a person’s thoughts and...

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