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Trumpeter, Singer Byron Stripling Salutes Louis Armstrong

Joins Nat'l Philharmonic in 'Sounds of New Orleans' Celebration

Witness the unforgettable jazz musician Byron Stripling’s electrifying performance in “Sounds of New Orleans: A Tribute to Louis Armstrong” with the National Philharmonic, led by Maestro Piotr Gajewski, on Saturday, March 30 at 8 p.m. at The Music Center at Strathmore’s Concert Hall.

Stripling got his start as the lead trumpeter in the Count Basie Orchestra and will perform Armstrong’s greatest hits, including his signature version of “When the Saints Go Marchin’ In.” He’ll perform other Armstrong hits, including “Saint Louis Blues,” “Satchmo Scattin’ & Swingin,'” and “What a Wonderful World.”
Stripling has performed as lead trumpeter and soloist with symphonies around the country, as well as at Carnegie Hall.

The great jazz pioneer Louis Armstrong spent his life traveling the world as an ambassador for the musical form that’s America’s greatest contribution to the arts. Trumpeter and singer Byron Stripling has lived a similar life, performing the timeless music in the style originated by Armstrong and his contemporaries.

“Nothing can ever get old in jazz, because it’s meant to be felt differently all the time,” Stripling said.
“When I played in Count Basie’s band, we were probably on the road almost 200 days a year, and it never felt old. We played ‘April in Paris’ every night. We played ‘One O’Clock Jump’ every night. Not only did I hear them and feel them as something new at each show; I actually felt I was part of the experience. Think of all the movies that include Armstrong’s ‘What a Wonderful World’ including Robin Williams, Good Morning Vietnam,” Stripling added.

Stripling has delighted international audiences with his soulful voice and charismatic swagger. He is a frequent performer with the Boston Pops Orchestra and is a featured soloist on the PBS television special, “Evening at Pops.” He currently serves as artistic director and conductor of the highly-acclaimed, award-winning Columbus Jazz Orchestra.

He first debuted at Carnegie Hall with the New York Pops and has since performed with more than 100 orchestras around the world, including the National Symphony, Seattle Symphony, Baltimore Symphony, Vancouver Symphony, Toronto Symphony and Dallas Symphony.

Satchmo Reigns Supreme

Louis Armstrong (1901-1971) was one of the most iconic American trumpeters in jazz history. Born in New Orleans, Armstrong grew up in abject poverty but also discovered a passion for jazz music. Armstrong played in marching and jazz bands throughout his teenage years, eventually making it to Mississippi riverboat dance bands in the 1920s. Armstrong began to play alongside—and sometimes, replace—New Orleans jazz musician King Oliver. Eventually, Armstrong would play throughout New York City and Chicago, where he started his most popular early work, the Armstrong Hot Five and Hot Seven recordings of 1925–28, which catapulted him into fame. Armstrong became an innovative performer, touring the United States and Europe as a soloist and with other big bands. He was one of the inventors of scat singing, and often sung lyrics on his recordings. In addition to playing the trumpet, Armstrong was a notable actor, comedian, singer, and bandleader.

For more information, visit www.nationalphilharmonic.org or call the Strathmore Ticket Office at 301.581.5100.

Look for our one-on-one chat in next week’s edition of The Washington Informer with Byron Stripling who, among other things, gave this writer a real lesson in the importance of Louis Armstrong both within the American songbook and one of the early developers and improvisational geniuses who formed what we call today “jazz.”  

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D. Kevin McNeir – Senior Editor

Award-winning journalist and 21-year Black Press veteran, book editor, voice-over specialist and college instructor (Philosophy, Religion, Journalism). Before joining us, he led the Miami Times to recognition as NNPA Publication of the Year.

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