Irving Gordon was an American songwriter. Irving Gordon was born in Brooklyn, New York, lived on Coney Island, he was named Israel Goldener but changed his name to Irving Gordon. As a child, he studied violin. In high school he wrote a symphony piece. Gordon wanted to study at Juilliard but Jews were not admitted at that time. After attending public schools in New York City, Gordon worked in the Catskill Mountains at some of the resort hotels in the area. While working there, he took to writing parody lyrics to some of the popular songs of the day. In the 1930s, he took a job with the music publishing firm headed by talent agent Irving Mills, at first writing only lyrics, but subsequently writing music as well. After Gordon was introduced to Duke Ellington in 1937, Ellington sometimes invited him to put words to his compositions; however working with Ellington was one of the most difficult commissions there was, since most of the Ellington songs were instrumental pieces whose singable potential only emerged after they had been played and recorded by one or another of the soloists in the Ellington orchestra.
While working as Ellington's lyricist, Gordon wrote the words to Billy Strayhorn's piece "Prelude to a Kiss." For years he like. After writing "Mister and Mississippi", Gordon decided he enjoyed puns on state names and wrote "Delaware,", a hit for Perry Como. Irving Gordon is best known for his song, "Unforgettable." He wrote "Allentown Jail", played by numerous musicians and told the story of a man who stole a diamond for his girlfriend and ended up in the Allentown jail, unable to make bail and was recorded by the French singer, Edith Piaf among others<https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Allentown_Jail>. Late in his life, Gordon won a Grammy for Song of the Year when Natalie Cole re-recorded her father Nat "King" Cole's earlier hit of "Unforgettable." Gordon wrote both the words and music for "Unforgettable." Gordon did not care for rock music, which he said was composed not of "melodies but maladies." Gordon told the Los Angeles Times that by 1960 the vogue for rhymed words and hummable melodies had passed, "So I became a tennis pro.
I have many lives."Abbott and Costello performed a baseball comedy routine, "Who's on First?" which they perfected during their years in vaudeville. Gordon has been credited with writing "Who's on first?" Although others have claimed authorship. Gordon is noted for his contribution to music and lyrics of the Americana genre. For examples it was thought that his song Two Brothers was a folk song about the civil war. For several years before his death he was writing a musical about Sigmund Freud. Irving Gordon died of lymphoma cancer in California, he was survived by three sons. "Allentown Jail" "Be Anything, But Darling Be Mine" "Blue Prelude" "Delaware" "Mama From The Train" "Me, Myself and I" "Mister and Mississippi" "Nine Tenths of the Tennessee River" "Prelude to a Kiss" "Two Brothers" "Unforgettable" "What Will I Tell My Heart" "Sinner or Saint" "Sorta on the Border" "The Kentuckian Song" "Rollin' Stone" "Too Fat For the Chimney"
A music genre is a conventional category that identifies some pieces of music as belonging to a shared tradition or set of conventions. It is to be distinguished from musical form and musical style, although in practice these terms are sometimes used interchangeably. Academics have argued that categorizing music by genre is inaccurate and outdated. Music can be divided into different genres in many different ways; the artistic nature of music means that these classifications are subjective and controversial, some genres may overlap. There are varying academic definitions of the term genre itself. In his book Form in Tonal Music, Douglass M. Green distinguishes between form, he lists madrigal, canzona and dance as examples of genres from the Renaissance period. To further clarify the meaning of genre, Green writes, "Beethoven's Op. 61 and Mendelssohn's Op. 64 are identical in genre – both are violin concertos – but different in form. However, Mozart's Rondo for Piano, K. 511, the Agnus Dei from his Mass, K. 317 are quite different in genre but happen to be similar in form."
Some, like Peter van der Merwe, treat the terms genre and style as the same, saying that genre should be defined as pieces of music that share a certain style or "basic musical language." Others, such as Allan F. Moore, state that genre and style are two separate terms, that secondary characteristics such as subject matter can differentiate between genres. A music genre or subgenre may be defined by the musical techniques, the style, the cultural context, the content and spirit of the themes. Geographical origin is sometimes used to identify a music genre, though a single geographical category will include a wide variety of subgenres. Timothy Laurie argues that since the early 1980s, "genre has graduated from being a subset of popular music studies to being an ubiquitous framework for constituting and evaluating musical research objects". Among the criteria used to classify musical genres are the trichotomy of art and traditional musics. Alternatively, music can be divided on three variables: arousal and depth.
Arousal reflects the energy level of the music. These three variables help explain why many people like similar songs from different traditionally segregated genres. Musicologists have sometimes classified music according to a trichotomic distinction such as Philip Tagg's "axiomatic triangle consisting of'folk','art' and'popular' musics", he explains that each of these three is distinguishable from the others according to certain criteria. The term art music refers to classical traditions, including both contemporary and historical classical music forms. Art music exists in many parts of the world, it emphasizes formal styles that invite technical and detailed deconstruction and criticism, demand focused attention from the listener. In Western practice, art music is considered a written musical tradition, preserved in some form of music notation rather than being transmitted orally, by rote, or in recordings, as popular and traditional music are. Most western art music has been written down using the standard forms of music notation that evolved in Europe, beginning well before the Renaissance and reaching its maturity in the Romantic period.
The identity of a "work" or "piece" of art music is defined by the notated version rather than by a particular performance, is associated with the composer rather than the performer. This is so in the case of western classical music. Art music may include certain forms of jazz, though some feel that jazz is a form of popular music. Sacred Christian music forms an important part of the classical music tradition and repertoire, but can be considered to have an identity of its own; the term popular music refers to any musical style accessible to the general public and disseminated by the mass media. Musicologist and popular music specialist Philip Tagg defined the notion in the light of sociocultural and economical aspects: Popular music, unlike art music, is conceived for mass distribution to large and socioculturally heterogeneous groups of listeners and distributed in non-written form, only possible in an industrial monetary economy where it becomes a commodity and in capitalist societies, subject to the laws of'free' enterprise... it should ideally sell as much as possible.
Popular music is found on most commercial and public service radio stations, in most commercial music retailers and department stores, in movie and television soundtracks. It is noted on the Billboard charts and, in addition to singer-songwriters and composers, it involves music producers more than other genres do; the distinction between classical and popular music has sometimes been blurred in marginal areas such as minimalist music and light classics. Background music for films/movies draws on both traditions. In this respect, music is like fiction, which draws a distinction between literary fiction and popular fiction, not always precise. Country music known as country and western, hillbilly music, is a genre of popular music that originated in the southern United States in the early 1920s; the polka is a Czech dance and genre of dance music familiar throughout Europe and the Americas. Rock music is a broad genre of popular music that originated as "rock and roll" in the United States in the early 1950s, developed into a range of different styles in the 1960s and particular
George Gershwin was an American composer and pianist whose compositions spanned both popular and classical genres. Among his best-known works are the orchestral compositions Rhapsody in Blue and An American in Paris, the songs Swanee and Fascinating Rhythm, the jazz standard I Got Rhythm, the opera Porgy and Bess which spawned the hit Summertime. Gershwin studied piano under Charles Hambitzer and composition with Rubin Goldmark, Henry Cowell, Joseph Brody, he began his career as a song plugger but soon started composing Broadway theater works with his brother Ira Gershwin and Buddy DeSylva. He moved to Paris intending to study with Nadia Boulanger, he returned to New York City and wrote Porgy and Bess with Ira and DuBose Heyward. It was a commercial failure but came to be considered one of the most important American operas of the twentieth century and an American cultural classic. Gershwin moved to Hollywood and composed numerous film scores until his death in 1937 from a malignant brain tumor.
His compositions have been adapted for use in films and television, several became jazz standards recorded and covered in many variations. Gershwin was of Russian Lithuanian Jewish ancestry, his grandfather, Jakov Gershowitz, had served for 25 years as a mechanic for the Imperial Russian Army to earn the right of free travel and residence as a Jew. His teenage son, Moishe Gershowitz, worked as a leather cutter for women's shoes. Moishe Gershowitz met and fell in love with Roza Bruskina, the teenage daughter of a furrier in Vilnius, she and her family moved to New York due to increasing anti-Jewish sentiment in Russia, changing her first name to Rose. Moishe, faced with compulsory military service if he remained in Russia, moved to America as soon as he could afford to. Once in New York, he changed his first name to Morris. Gershowitz lived with a maternal uncle in Brooklyn, he married Rose on July 21, 1895, Gershowitz soon Americanized his name to Gershwine. Their first child, Ira Gershwin, was born on December 6, 1896, after which the family moved into a second-floor apartment on Brooklyn's Snediker Avenue.
On September 26, 1898, George was born as second son to Morris and Rose Bruskin Gershwine in their second-floor apartment on Brooklyn's Snediker Avenue. His birth certificate identifies him as Jacob Gershwine, with the surname pronounced'Gersh-vin' in the Russian and Yiddish immigrant community, he had just one given name, contrary to the American practice of giving children both a first and middle name. He was named after a one time Russian army mechanic, he soon became known as George, changed the spelling of his surname to'Gershwin' about the time he became a professional musician. After Ira and George, another boy Arthur Gershwin, a girl Frances Gershwin were born into the family; the family lived in many different residences, as their father changed dwellings with each new enterprise in which he became involved. They grew up around the Yiddish Theater District. George and Ira frequented the local Yiddish theaters, with George appearing onstage as an extra. George lived a usual childhood existence for children of New York tenements: running around with his boyhood friends, roller skating and misbehaving in the streets.
Until 1908, he cared nothing for music, when as a ten-year-old he was intrigued upon hearing his friend Maxie Rosenzweig's violin recital. The sound, the way his friend played, captured him. At around the same time, George's parents had bought a piano for lessons for his older brother Ira, but to his parents' surprise, Ira's relief, it was George who spent more time playing it. Although his younger sister Frances was the first in the family to make a living through her musical talents, she married young and devoted herself to being a mother and housewife, thus surrendering any serious time to musical endeavors. Having given up her performing career, she settled upon painting as a creative outlet, a hobby George pursued. Arthur Gershwin followed in the paths of George and Ira becoming a composer of songs and short piano works. With a degree of frustration, George tried various piano teachers for some two years before being introduced to Charles Hambitzer by Jack Miller, the pianist in the Beethoven Symphony Orchestra.
Until his death in 1918, Hambitzer remained Gershwin's musical mentor and taught him conventional piano technique, introduced him to music of the European classical tradition, encouraged him to attend orchestral concerts. Following such concerts, young Gershwin would try to play, on the piano at home, the music he had heard from recall, without sheet music; as a matter of course, Gershwin studied with the classical composer Rubin Goldmark and avant-garde composer-theorist Henry Cowell, thus formalizing his classical music training. In 1913, Gershwin left school at the age of 15 and found his first job as a "song plugger", his employer was Jerome H. Remick and Company, a Detroit-based publishing firm with a branch office on New York City's Tin Pan Alley, he earned $15 a week, his first published song was "When You Want'Em, You Can't Get'Em, When You've Got'Em, You Don't Want'Em" in 1916 when Gershwin was only 17 years old. It earned him 50 cents. In 1916, Gershwin started working for Aeolian Company and Standard Music Rolls in New York and arranging.
He produced dozens, if not hundreds, of rolls under his own and assumed names
Arthur Schwartz was an American composer and film producer. Schwartz was born in Brooklyn, New York City, on November 25, 1900, he taught himself to play the harmonica and piano as a child, began playing for silent films at age 14. He earned a B. A. in English at New York University and an M. A. in that subject at Columbia. Forced by his father, an attorney, to study law, Schwartz graduated from NYU Law School and was admitted to the bar in 1924. While studying law, he supported himself by teaching English in the New York school system, he worked on songwriting concurrently with his studies and published his first song by 1923. Acquaintances such as Lorenz Hart and George Gershwin encouraged him to stick with composing, he attempted to convince Howard Dietz, an MGM publicist who had collaborated with Jerome Kern, to work with him, but Dietz declined. As Artist Direct documents: Schwartz placed his first songs in The New Yorkers. By 1928, he had convinced Dietz to write with him, their first songs together were used in the Broadway revue The Little Show and included "I Guess I'll Have to Change My Plan", which belatedly became a hit three years when it was recorded by Rudy Vallée.
Schwartz's career was launched, in 1930 he contributed songs to six shows, three in London and three in New York, the most successful of, Three's a Crowd, which featured the same cast as The Little Show and featured the hit "Something to Remember You By". Schwartz started contributing songs to motion pictures, beginning with "I'm Afraid of You" in Queen High. Among other Broadway musicals for which Schwartz wrote the music are: The Band Wagon, A Tree Grows in Brooklyn, By the Beautiful Sea, The Gay Life, Jennie, his films include the MGM musical The Band Wagon with lyricist Howard Dietz. Schwartz worked as a producer, for Columbia Pictures, his work includes the Cole Porter biographical film Night and Day. Schwartz was married to 1930s Broadway ingénue Kay Carrington, until her death when their first son, Jonathan Schwartz, was 14. Jonathan is now a radio personality and sometime musician. Schwartz's younger son, Paul Schwartz, with actress/dancer Mary Schwartz, is a composer, conductor and producer.
Arthur Schwartz died September 1984, in Kintnersville, Pennsylvania. Schwartz received two Academy Award nominations for Best Song: the first in 1944 for "They're Either Too Young or Too Old" in the film Thank Your Lucky Stars. In 1972, Schwartz was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame. In 1981, he was inducted in 1981 into the American Theater Hall of Fame. In 1990, Schwartz's hit, "That's Entertainment" from the film The Band Wagon, was awarded the ASCAP Award for Most Performed Feature Film Standard. Schwartz collaborated with some of the best lyricists of his day, including Dietz, Dorothy Fields, Ira Gershwin, Oscar Hammerstein II, Edward Heyman, Frank Loesser, Johnny Mercer, Leo Robin, Al Stillman. See the section Arthur Schwartz in List of musicals by composer: M to Z#S; the following is a selection of songs composed by Arthur Schwartz. "By Myself", recorded by Rosemary Clooney, Stacey Kent, Julie London, Ann Richards and notably Judy Garland. "I Guess I'll Have to Change My Plan", introduced by Clifton Webb in the revue The Little Show "Lucky Seven" "High and Low", performed in The Band Wagon by John Barker and Roberta Robinson "Hoops", introduced in the revue The Band Wagon by Fred and Adele Astaire "Dancing in the Dark", introduced by John Barker in the revue The Band Wagon "I Love Louisa", introduced by Fred and Adele Astaire in the revue The Band Wagon "If There Is Someone Lovelier Than You", recorded by Dick Haymes "Alone Together", introduced in the revue Flying Colors, by Jean Sargent "Louisiana Hayride", introduced by Tamara Geva, Clifton Webb, ensemble in the revue Flying Colors "Something to Remember You By", recorded by Morgana King, Irene Kral, Jo Stafford "You and the Night and the Music", from the musical Revenge with Music "Get Yourself a Geisha Girl", from the musical At Home Abroad "Got a Bran' New Suit", introduced by Ethel Waters in the revue At Home Abroad "Love Is a Dancing Thing", from the 1935 revue At Home Abroad "Paree", from the musical At Home Abroad "I See Your Face Before Me", introduced by Jack Buchanan, Evelyn Laye, Adele Dixon in the musical Between the Devil and recorded by Frank Sinatra in his In the Wee Small Hours album and by Doris Day on her Day by Night album.
"Haunted Heart", introduced in the musical Inside U. S. A. and recorded by Susannah McCorkle "That's Entertainment!", for the film The Band Wagon "Waitin' for the Evening Train", for the musical Jennie "After All You're All I'm After" "Then I'll Be Tired of You".
Ella Jane Fitzgerald was an American jazz singer sometimes referred to as the First Lady of Song, Queen of Jazz, Lady Ella. She was noted for her purity of tone, impeccable diction, intonation, a "horn-like" improvisational ability in her scat singing. After a tumultuous adolescence, Fitzgerald found stability in musical success with the Chick Webb Orchestra, performing across the country but most associated with the Savoy Ballroom in Harlem, her rendition of the nursery rhyme "A-Tisket, A-Tasket" helped boost both her and Webb to national fame. After taking over the band when Webb died, Fitzgerald left it behind in 1942 to start her solo career, her manager was Moe Gale, co-founder of the Savoy, until she turned the rest of her career over to Norman Granz, who founded Verve Records to produce new records by Fitzgerald. With Verve she recorded some of her more noted works her interpretations of the Great American Songbook. While Fitzgerald appeared in movies and as a guest on popular television shows in the second half of the twentieth century, her musical collaborations with Louis Armstrong, Duke Ellington, The Ink Spots were some of her most notable acts outside of her solo career.
These partnerships produced some of her best-known songs such as "Dream a Little Dream of Me", "Cheek to Cheek", "Into Each Life Some Rain Must Fall", "It Don't Mean a Thing". In 1993, she ended her nearly 60-year career with her last public performance. Three years she died at the age of 79 after years of declining health, her accolades included fourteen Grammy Awards, the National Medal of Arts, the Presidential Medal of Freedom. Fitzgerald was born on April 1917, in Newport News, Virginia, she was the daughter of Temperance "Tempie" Henry. Her parents lived together for at least two and a half years after she was born. In the early 1920s, Fitzgerald's mother and her new partner, a Portuguese immigrant named Joseph Da Silva, moved to Yonkers, in Westchester County, New York, her half-sister, Frances Da Silva, was born in 1923. By 1925, Fitzgerald and her family had moved to a poor Italian area, she began her formal education at the age of six and was an outstanding student, moving through a variety of schools before attending Benjamin Franklin Junior High School in 1929.
Starting in third grade, Fitzgerald admired Earl Snakehips Tucker. She performed for her peers on the way at lunchtime, she and her family were Methodists and were active in the Bethany African Methodist Episcopal Church, where she attended worship services, Bible study, Sunday school. The church provided Fitzgerald with her earliest experiences in music. Fitzgerald listened to jazz recordings by Louis Armstrong, Bing Crosby, The Boswell Sisters, she idolized the Boswell Sisters' lead singer Connee Boswell saying, "My mother brought home one of her records, I fell in love with it... I tried so hard to sound just like her."In 1932, when Fitzgerald was fifteen, her mother died from injuries received in a car accident. Her stepfather took care of her until April 1933; this swift change in her circumstances, reinforced by what Fitzgerald biographer Stuart Nicholson describes as rumors of "ill treatment" by her stepfather, leaves him to speculate that Da Silva might have abused her. Fitzgerald began skipping school, her grades suffered.
She worked as a lookout with a Mafia-affiliated numbers runner. She never talked publicly about this time in her life; when the authorities caught up with her, she was placed in the Colored Orphan Asylum in Riverdale in the Bronx. When the orphanage proved too crowded, she was moved to the New York Training School for Girls, a state reformatory school in Hudson, New York. While she seems to have survived during 1933 and 1934 in part from singing on the streets of Harlem, Fitzgerald made her most important debut at age 17 on November 21, 1934, in one of the earliest Amateur Nights at the Apollo Theater, she had intended to go on stage and dance, but she was intimidated by a local dance duo called the Edwards Sisters and opted to sing instead. Performing in the style of Connee Boswell, she sang "Judy" and "The Object of My Affection" and won first prize, she won the chance to perform at the Apollo for a week but because of her disheveled appearance, the theater never gave her that part of her prize.
In January 1935, Fitzgerald won the chance to perform for a week with the Tiny Bradshaw band at the Harlem Opera House. She was introduced to drummer and bandleader Chick Webb, who had asked his signed singer Charlie Linton to help find him a female singer. Although Webb was "reluctant to sign her...because she was gawky and unkempt, a'diamond in the rough,'" he offered her the opportunity to test with his band when they played a dance at Yale University. Met with approval by both audiences and her fellow musicians, Fitzgerald was asked to join Webb's orchestra and gained acclaim as part of the group's performances at Harlem's Savoy Ballroom. Fitzgerald recorded several hit songs, including "Love and Kisses" and " You'll Have to Swing It", but it was her 1938 version of the nursery rhyme, "A-Tisket, A-Tasket", a song she co-wrote, that brought her public acclaim. "A-Tisket, A-Tasket" became a major hit on the radio and was one of the biggest-selling records of the decade. Webb died of spinal tuberculosis on June 16, 1939, his band was renamed Ella and Her Famous Orchestra with Fitzgerald taking on the role of bandleader.
She recorded nearly 150 songs with Webb's orchestra between 1935 and 1942. In The New York Times obituary o
Robert Sherwood Haggart was a dixieland jazz double bass player and arranger. Although he is associated with dixieland, he was one of the finest rhythm bassists of the Swing Era. In 1935, Haggart became a member of the Bob Crosby Band, he arranged and composed "Big Noise from Winnetka", "My Inspiration", "What's New?", "South Rampart Street Parade". He remained with the band until it dissolved in 1942 began working as session musician, with much of his time spent at Decca Records, he recorded with Billie Holiday, Duke Ellington, Benny Goodman, Ella Fitzgerald. He and Yank Lawson formed the Lawson-Haggart Band, they led the World's Greatest Jazz Band from 1968–1978, he appeared at jazz festivals until his death on December 2, 1998 in Florida. From Dixie Big Noise from Winnetka Live at the Roosevelt Grill What's New? Makes a Sentimental Journey Enjoys Carolina in the Morning A Portrait of Bix Hag Leaps In The All-Stars at Bob Haggart's 80th Birthday Party The Piano Giants at Bob Haggart's 80th Birthday Party The Music of Bob Haggart Kragting, Ben.
"Bob Haggart Interview". Doctor Jazz Magazine: 10–13. Kragting, Ben. "Bob Haggart Interview". Doctor Jazz Magazine: 10–15. Bob Haggart discography at Discogs Bob Haggart on IMDb Bob Haggart at Find a Grave Bob Haggart Interview NAMM Oral History Library
Louis Daniel Armstrong, nicknamed Satchmo and Pops, was an American trumpeter, composer and occasional actor, one of the most influential figures in jazz. His career spanned five decades, from the 1920s to the 1960s, different eras in the history of jazz. In 2017, he was inducted into the Rhythm & Blues Hall of Fame. Armstrong was raised in New Orleans. Coming to prominence in the 1920s as an "inventive" trumpet and cornet player, Armstrong was a foundational influence in jazz, shifting the focus of the music from collective improvisation to solo performance. Around 1922, he followed Joe "King" Oliver, to Chicago to play in the Creole Jazz Band. In the Windy City, he networked with other popular jazz musicians, reconnecting with his friend, Bix Beiderbecke, made new contacts, which included Hoagy Carmichael and Lil Hardin, he earned a reputation at "cutting contests", relocated to New York in order to join Fletcher Henderson's band. With his recognizable rich, gravelly voice, Armstrong was an influential singer, demonstrating great dexterity as an improviser, bending the lyrics and melody of a song for expressive purposes.
He was very skilled at scat singing. Armstrong is renowned for his charismatic stage presence and voice as much as for his trumpet playing. Armstrong's influence extends well beyond jazz, by the end of his career in the 1960s, he was regarded as a profound influence on popular music in general. Armstrong was one of the first popular African-American entertainers to "cross over", that is, whose skin color became secondary to his music in an America, racially divided at the time, he publicly politicized his race to the dismay of fellow African Americans, but took a well-publicized stand for desegregation in the Little Rock crisis. His artistry and personality allowed him access to the upper echelons of American society highly restricted for black men. Armstrong stated that he was born on July 4, 1900. Although he died in 1971, it was not until the mid-1980s that his true birth date, August 4, 1901, was discovered by Tad Jones by researching baptismal records. At least three other biographies treat the July 4th birth date as a myth.
Armstrong was born in New Orleans on August 4, 1901 to William Armstrong. Albert was from Boutte and gave birth at home when she was about sixteen. William Armstrong abandoned the family shortly after. About two years he had a daughter, Beatrice "Mama Lucy" Armstrong, raised by Albert. Louis Armstrong was raised by his grandmother until the age of five when he was returned to his mother, he spent his youth in poverty in a rough neighborhood known as The Battlefield. At six he attended the Fisk School for Boys, a school that accepted black children in the racially segregated system of New Orleans, he did odd jobs for a family of Lithuanian Jews. While selling coal in Storyville, he heard spasm bands, groups that played music out of household objects, he heard the early sounds of jazz from bands that played in brothels and dance halls such as Pete Lala's, where King Oliver performed. The Karnoffskys treated him like family. Knowing he lived without a father, they nurtured him. In his memoir Louis Armstrong + the Jewish Family in New Orleans, La. the Year of 1907, he described his discovery that this family was subject to discrimination by "other white folks" who felt that they were better than Jews: "I was only seven years old but I could see the ungodly treatment that the white folks were handing the poor Jewish family whom I worked for."
He wore a Star of David pendant for the rest of his life and wrote about what he learned from them: "how to live—real life and determination." His first musical performance may have been at the side of the Karnoffsky's junk wagon. To distinguish them from other hawkers, he tried playing a tin horn to attract customers. Morris Karnoffsky gave Armstrong an advance toward the purchase of a cornet from a pawn shop; when Armstrong was eleven, he dropped out of school. His mother moved into a one-room house on Perdido Street with him and her common-law husband, Tom Lee, next door to her brother Ike and his two sons. Armstrong joined a quartet of boys, he got into trouble. Cornetist Bunk Johnson said. In his years Armstrong credited King Oliver, he said about his youth, "Every time I close my eyes blowing that trumpet of mine—I look right in the heart of good old New Orleans... It has given me something to live for." Borrowing his stepfather's gun without permission, he fired a blank into the air and was arrested on December 31, 1912.
He spent the night at New Orleans Juvenile Court was sentenced the next day to detention at the Colored Waif's Home. Life at the home was spartan. Mattresses were absent. Meals were little more than bread and molasses. Captain Joseph Jones used corporal punishment. Armstrong developed his cornet skills by playing in the band. Peter Davis, who appeared at the home at the request of Captain Jones, became Armstrong's first teacher and chose him as bandleader. With this band, the thirteen year-old. On June 14, 1914, Armstrong was released into the custody of his father and his new stepmother, Gertrude, he lived in this household with two stepbrothers for several months. After Gertrude gave birth to a daughter, Armstrong's father never welcomed him, so he returned to his mother, Mary Albert. In her small home, he had to share a bed with his sister, his mother still lived in The Battlefield