->''"He was born poor, died rich, and never hurt anyone along the way."''
-->-- '''Music/DukeEllington'''

'''Louis "Satchmo" Armstrong''' (August 4th 1901 -- July 6th 1971) was a massively influential {{Jazz}} musician. Born in New Orleans, he learned how to play the trumpet and cornet, and engaged in a fifty-year career in jazz. He is considered the {{Trope Codifier}} for many basic elements of jazz, including improvisation and {{scat singing}}.

Nowadays, his most well-known contribution to pop culture is the song "What A Wonderful World", which is frequently used for {{soundtrack dissonance}}.

He was the first African-American to host a nationally broadcast radio show in the TheThirties. He's also had several film appearances such as ''Film/HighSociety'' and the film version of ''Theatre/HelloDolly'', and a few where he played himself: ''New Orleans'', ''The Five Pennies'' and ''Film/ASongIsBorn''.

Note that although he's commonly known these days as ''Louie'' Armstrong, most jazz aficionados are careful to pronounce his first name "Lewis". This can be SeriousBusiness among those who see the "Louie" nickname as cartoonish and disrespectful - as did Armstrong himself.

[[NamesTheSame Not to be confused with]] [[Manga/FullMetalAlchemist the muscle-bound Strong-Arm Alchemist whose skills were]] ''[[MemeticMutation passed down through the Armstrong line for generations!!]]''
!!Songs of note:

* "West End Blues"
* "Struttin' With Some Barbecue"
* "Stardust"
* "What A Wonderful World"
* "When The Saints Go Marching In"
* "Dream A Little Dream Of Me"
* "Ain't Misbehavin'"
* "Stompin' At The Savoy"
* "(What Did I Do To Be So) Black and Blue"
* "[[Film/OnHerMajestysSecretService We Have All The Time In The World]]"
* "Hello, Dolly!"
* "Heebie Jeebies"
* "St. James Infirmary"
* "Mack the Knife"

!!Albums of note:

* ''Louis Armstrong Plays W.C. Handy''
* ''Ella And Louis''
* ''Porgy And Bess''
* ''Louis Armstrong Meets Oscar Peterson''
* ''The Real Ambassadors''
* ''Struttin''' (posthumous)
* ''Music/TheCompleteHotFiveAndHotSevenRecordings''

!!Tropes found in his music and career include:
* AsHimself: Appeared in a lot of movies, but mostly played himself.
* BigBand: Although he preferred to play in smaller groups, he was one of the big band leaders of the 1940s.
* BrokenSmile: His performance at the [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7xIjBU-TS4k 1970 Newport Jazz Festival]] was some variation of this. He was the honored guest of the performance, and despite his failing health he elected to go against his DoctorsOrders and sing at it. The whole performance shows him alternating between his trademark cheery smile and being overcome with emotion and sobbing, all while never missing a note in the song. There is documentary footage of him being interviewed before the performance, [[HeroicBSOD breaking into tears at the thought of going on that stage without singing]].
* ChartDisplacement: Today his best known song is "What a Wonderful World". While the song topped the charts in the UK, it was a flop within his lifetime in the US, and didn't really become popular until its inclusion in the film Film/GoodMorningVietnam in 1988 (the events of which took place [[AnachronismStew two years before the song was recorded]]). His actual signature song was "When it's Sleepy Time Down South", as well as his cover of "Hello Dolly" in the 1960's.
* ConceptAlbum: ''The Real Ambassadors''.
* CoolOldGuy: Well ''duh''. In 1964 he kicked Music/TheBeatles out of the #1 spot with "Hello Dolly!" He was 63! ''[[Music/TheBeatles The]] '''[[Music/TheBeatles BEATLES!]]'''''
* {{Crossover}}: Recorded duets with Music/EllaFitzgerald and made an album with Music/DukeEllington.
* CoverVersion: He did numerous covers throughout his career including "Stardust" and "It Don't Mean a Thing (If It Ain't Got That Swing)"
* CutSong: ''Ain't It The Truth'' from ''Cabin In The Sky''.
* DeepSouth: Loved to evoke imagery from the American South in his music, like ''When It's Sleepy Time Down South''.
* [[EpicRocking Epic Swinging]]
* ExpositoryThemeTune: "High Society Calypso" for the 1956 film ''High Society'.
* GutturalGrowler: Armstrong's singing voice was famously gravelly, but no less expressive for that. It was less so when he was a young man -- his 1928 wordless vocal duet with the clarinet in 'West End Blues' will convince anyone that he was a great singer.
* IconicOutfit: His blue and/or black suit, white handkerchief in one hand, trumpet in the other.
* {{Improv}}: Armstrong is the first great jazz improviser on record. Since jazz is characterised by lots of improvisation, this makes Armstrong the first great jazz musician on record. TropeCodifier, indeed.
* {{Instrumental}}: His trumpet solos were often this.
* ItIsPronouncedTroPAY: As mentioned above, Armstrong was insistent on pronouncing his first name "Lewis" rather than the diminutive "Louie," making the latter a bit of a FandomBerserkButton today. Ironically, seeing that Louis is originally a French name that ''would'' be pronounced "Louie" in that language.
* {{Jazz}}: Synonymous with the genre.
* LargeHam: Enjoyed clowning it up in front of the camera.
* LocationSong: "West End Blues", "St. Louis Blues", "When It's Sleepy Time Down South", all nostalgic and melancholic tracks and songs about these locations.
* LyricalDissonance: "Old Man Mose" is a very cheerful, upbeat melody... about a guy reporting a neighbor's deatn.
* {{Mammy}}: Character in ''When It's Sleepy Time Down South''.
* {{Mondegreen}}
* MoodWhiplash: See BrokenSmile above.
* MusicOfNote: To many listeners, Louis Armstrong defines the entire genre of {{Jazz}}.
* MurderBallad: "Mack The Knife", "You Rascal You". It's been noted that in Armstrong's early years playing sleazy dives in New Orleans, he would have known plenty of Mack the Knifes.
* PatrickStewartSpeech: His spoken-word preface to his less-famous later recording of "What a Wonderful World".
* RagsToRiches: Grew up in a poor black neighbourhood, managed to become an internationally famous musical superstar despite racial discrimination and prejudices, as well as respected as an innovative, influential and creative artist and died rich.
* RealSongThemeTune: "Frank's Place" used "Do You Know What It Means To Miss New Orleans?".
* RivalsTeamUp: Creator/DukeEllington wasn't exactly a rival to Armstrong as they weren't competing with each other, but the one album that they made together, 1961's ''The Great Summit'', contains much awesomeness of the kind invoked by this trope.
* RuggedScar: Armstrong's lips were heavily scarred. Constant trumpet-playing caused him to grow calluses on his lips that would interfere with his playing, so to deal with them, he'd ''cut the calluses off with a razor blade'', leaving scars. Eventually he had to stop playing altogether. Needless to say, trumpet players are not advised to do what he did.
* TheSacredDarkness: "The dark sacred night" is mentioned in "What a Wonderful World."
* SillyRabbitCynicismIsForLosers: His original recording of "What a Wonderful World" could be interpreted as this in hindsight, given its timing in the U.S. political landscape. Vietnam was ramping up into a real war, and Martin Luther King, Jr. would be shot the following year. But Satchmo made the trope explicit when he made a less-famous second recording of the song a few years later. He added a spoken-word "preface" that directly addressed naysayers. An excerpt:
-->'''Louis:''' Seems to me, it ain't the world that's so bad, but what we're doing to it. And all I'm saying is, "See what a wonderful world it would be, if only we gave it a chance."
* SingingSimlish: TropeCodifier of the "scat" technique of singing that uses nonsense syllables on improvised vocal lines.
* SmokyVoice: And how!
* SomethingBlues: "West End Blues", "Potato Head Blues"...
* SopranoAndGravel: Armstrong's collaborations with Music/EllaFitzgerald. Possibly the {{Ur Example}}.
* SouthernFriedGenius: He was from New Orleans, but in addition to being a musical genius, Armstrong was a lifelong reader and talented, idiosyncratic writer who carried a dictionary with him on tour. He's one of the few great jazz musicians to have a distinctive literary style, and the only one whose Selected Writings are [[http://books.google.co.uk/books/about/Louis_Armstrong_in_His_Own_Words.html?id=fdxDDe-fb8sC&redir_esc=y published by Oxford University Press]].
* SuspiciouslyAproposMusic: ''VideoGame/{{Fallout 2}}'' uses "A Kiss To Build A Dream On" in the beginning.
** Likewise, the titular Invisible Man of Ralph Ellison's ''Literature/{{Invisible Man}}'' plays Armstrong's version of "(What Did I Do to Be So) Black and Blue" in the novel's introduction.
* TookALevelInCheerfulness: His public persona was being a man who was eternally happy and joyful. Yet he could also play and sing melancholic tunes, like "Black And Blue".
* UncleTomFoolery: Subverted. Armstrong was often accused of doing this, but jazz critic Gary Giddins has retorted that to dislike or resent Armstrong's eternally cheerful demeanour is to diminish him as an artist by refusing to allow him to be himself; Armstrong projected confidence and warmth without ever losing dignity.
** He also famously [[http://www.chron.com/opinion/outlook/article/The-day-Louis-Armstrong-blew-more-than-his-trumpet-1813025.php spoke out on the enforced school segregation in Arkansas in 1957]], saying UsefulNotes/DwightDEisenhower had "no guts" and calling the governor a "[[PrecisionFStrike no-good motherfucker]]."
** That said, it must be noted that many of his mannerisms on stage descended directly from Minstrelsy. In particular, the handkerchief which never left his hand; coming from the minstrel tradition of blackfaced characters making a show of how hard they were working to entertain their (white) audience. However these were mannerisms which nearly all black musicians of his era adopted to some degree, and much of the criticism that they earned him came from the fact that Armstrong's career lasted so much longer than most of his black contemporaries and he [[DiscoDan never changed his behavior]].
* WeaksauceWeakness: Addiction was an epidemic within jazz music circles. Many succumbed to alcoholism, or turned to even harder drugs like heroin. Armstrong, however, was addicted to ''laxatives''.[[note]]He famously carried a jar of Swiss Kriss laxative pills around with him, and urged them on everyone he met. Downplayed in that they don't seem to have done him any harm; his enthusiasm for laxatives was regarded by people around him as an amusing personality quirk, not a serious health problem.[[/note]]
* WhenImGoneSong: ''What a Wonderful World'' is a Type 3.