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Category:    Home > Reviews > Documentary > Jazz > Louis Armstrong – King Of Jazz (Quantum Leap)

Louis Armstrong – King Of Jazz (Quantum Leap)


Picture: C+     Sound: C+     Extras: C     Main Program: B-



Jordi Vall Escriu’s 2005 production Louis Armstrong – King Of Jazz is a somewhat ambitious attempt to capture the music of the iconic musician and personality as tribute.  It only runs about 50 minutes and even takes liberties with the footage and stills by adding monochromatic color all over the place.  However, what it does to well is show the innovative, groundbreaking and edgy he really was in a way that is not remembered enough.


There is the racial reasons of not wanting to show an African American with talent and intelligence making his own way without compromise and being ahead of his time so far back.  There is the fact older music is being ignored more than ever.  There is even an increasing sense of music illiteracy that postmodern forms like sampling further trivialize, even with a sense in certain popular music corners that all music and art is disposable and worth mutilating.  This is definitely worth a look.


The 1.33 X 1 image is not bad, though the added color might drive some crazy, but it was not too overdone and the classic footage is major enough.  The Dolby Digital 2.0 is often mono like the recordings and clips, so expect only so much, but facts and narration always clear.  Extras include tax filmography, select discography, about two weblinks, info about the releasing company plus their other releases and a selection of postage stamps from around the world he has appeared on so far.



-   Nicholas Sheffo


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