This weekend is Satchmo Summerfest, an annual festival that honors New Orleans’ own jazz legend and one of the most influential musicians of the 20th century, Louis Armstrong. While Louis is best known for introducing the world to his improvisational solo jazz style, he had many notable accomplishments and adventures throughout his life. Among them…

– Armstrong famously criticized the President Eisenhower over segregation. At the time, when racial tensions were high, his outburst was viewed as a controversial, even tabboo subject. In retrospect, Armstrong is admired for his brave words and candid political stance.

– He toured Africa as musical ambassador for the US State Department during the height of the Cold War, and later joked that he (his music) stopped a civil war!

– At the age of 62, he surpassed The Beatles at the top of the pop charts!

Satchmo was quite the remarkable man! Wonder where the name Satchmo came from? It’s a shortened nickname for satchel mouth.  They say, when Armstrong was growing up in New Orleans, he would dance in the streets for pennies and put the coins in his mouth like a satchel so the bigger kids wouldn’t take his earnings.