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11/4/09

Ambassador Armstrong's 1955 Milan session














The advent of tape recording opened the door to all kinds of audio manipulations that were not available to 78 rpm record producers. The result of that is sometimes good and sometimes bad, but it can create a nightmare for the dedicated few who laboriously try to put it all into some kind of order: the discographers.


As we continue to delve into the Armstrong file, we take a look at one such nightmare, the Ambassador Satch album. The concept was to reflect the global nature of Armstrong's musical activities and how he showed the world a desirable side of our country. An Armstrong smile and a few well-placed notes probably did more to win us friends than any envoy's handshake could. It goes without saying that this needed to be an album on which the beloved Satchmo performed for a variety of audiences, and that he does, but not always. That is to say, the audience is there and Armstrong is there, but not necessarily at the same time. Manipulation.

You get a good idea of the audio shuffling that takes place in an editing room when you scrutinize the Milan notes posted below and the previously posted notes for the W.C. Handy and Concertgebouw sessions.

Don't forget to click on the images to enlarge them.




I want to move on to other things after this, but when we return to the Armstrong file, we'll take a look at some interesting letters.


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