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Come see the in-demand bassist perform with his own band tonight
Kermit Ruffins and the Barbecue Swingers
Les Bon Temps Roule (10:00 PM)
Candlelight Lounge (8:00PM)
Shake your brass in the Treme with a blend of hip hop, R&B, and pop
Maple Leaf (8:00PM)
One of New Orleans’ best percussionist invites his friends to the stage
PubliQ House (9:30PM)
Brass with electric guitar and keyboard
Chickie Wah Wah (8:00PM)
Americana from Austin
City Park (6:00PM)
Thursdays at Twilight, tonight with one of New Orleans’ premiere contemporary jazz pianists
Gasa Gasa (8:30PM)
Hosted by the Swamp Lilies, feat. Greg Good
Mid City Lanes Rock N Bowl (8:30PM)
Zydeco from Ville Platte
Ogden Museum (6:00PM)
Tonight, Jimbo Mathus performs while guests enjoy contemporary southern art after hours, sip on cocktails, and enjoy grub from Miss Linda’s Soul Food Catering
Satchmo's Horn, Reborn
Building Louis Armstrong's Dream Trumpet
There’s no doubt Louis Armstrong was larger than life, but Jason Harrelson thinks he could have been even bigger.
Just in time for Pops' birthday this weekend, the trumpet designer and builder is about to launch his custom-designed Satchmo Trumpet
Harrelson said that the trumpet is not intended to be a replica in any way, but that he believes Armstrong would have sported something similar to it had technology provided the means to do so.
“It’s a real modern instrument, it plays with a much bigger, broader sound. My theory is that Louis Armstrong always wanted to play with a bigger sound but he couldn’t because of the limitations at the time,” Harrelson said.
Tomorrow at 2 p.m., Harrelson will talk about the Horns of Louis in “Satchmo’s Gear,” a seminar on Satchmo's unique sound, the trumpets that made him so iconic, and what Pops’ trumpet would have looked like if he could have made it himself. The seminar is part of the annual Satchmo SummerFest which returns to downtown New Orleans this weekend, and begins Friday with seminars at the Old US Mint.
Harrelson flew all the way down from Minnesota in honor of the jazz legend, but he said it’s never any trouble coming to the Big Easy.
“I was born in Louisiana and moved all around the country. I was always drawn to New Orleans, mainly because I was a musician from an early age. It’s different than what you find around the rest of the country,” Harrelson said.
Harrelson’s tribute trumpet (pictured) is made out of brass for the most part. Harrelson said the bell size is larger than an average trumpet at 5.5 inches in diameter. “Most of the horns he played on were 4.5 inches or smaller,” Harrelson said. In laymen’s terms, the bell of a trumpet is the end of the instrument, where the sound is ultimately delivered.
Pops’ booming voice was one of his distinguishing characteristics, but Harrelson believes that the artist would have preferred for the biggest sound to come through his horn. “Most people are the exact opposite, most have a much smaller voice than their trumpets. Louis Armstrong would have had a bigger sound had he had the right equipment,” Harrelson said.
Harrelson also believes that Armstrong may have had more custom instruments had technology provided them, although Armstrong did have an affinity for decorated pieces.
“The technology to make custom instruments and mouthpieces was kind of in its infancy at that time. Some of them were custom-made towards the end, but for the most part they were decorated versions of the production model,” Harrelson said.
The horn will be auctioned at the Louisiana Purchase Auction in November. Proceeds from the trumpet will go towards Satchmo Fest 2013. Harrelson said that the most important of his visit is supporting New Orleans jazz education.
“The Satchmo horn was built to pay tribute to Louis Armstrong and the Satchmo festival—the idea is just to continue rolling jazz education and jazz performing and keeping it alive. I’m coming to show my support for New Orleans musicians,” Harrelson said.
Satchmo Summerfest continues all weekend with more seminars, music at the Old U.S. Mint on Saturday and Sunday, and the Fest's annual Jazz Mass and second line through Treme on Sunday. Full details are available here.
Dead Huey Long, Emma Boyce, Ian Hoch, Sarah Esenwein, Will Dilella, Chris Rinaldi, Lianna Patch, Phil Yiannopoulos, Cate Czarnecki, Jonas Griffin, Jennifer Abbot, Mary Kilpatrick, Elaina Patton, Mike Horst, Devin Bambrick, Katherine McGuire, Norris Ortolano, Joe Shriner
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