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Monthly Archives: August 2009

Another glowing review by Rami Shamir for the Evergreen Review:

” The Revolution initiated by Gore Vidal with his Empire series is continued and modernized by Steven Brower in SATCHMO: The Wonderful World and Art of Louis Armstrong. It is a Revolution that challenges the way in which history is told, read, and accepted…Most importantly, however, SATCHMO: The Wonderful World and Art of Louis Armstrong reminds us that the book as an object is indispensable in a time when the fate of the printed book is very much debated.”



I can’t believe it has been over three months since I updated info about Satchmo. A lot has happened since that time. I have a YouTube video up where I briefly discuss the book:

There have been several more wonderful reviews:

Satchmo: The Wonderful World and Art of Louis Armstrong goes above and beyond any mere biography by showing more private portions of the legend’s life….Author Steven Brower offers a thorough explanation into the personal side of Armstrong, providing crisp color scans of his never-before-seen collages, scrapbook pages, personal writings, and artwork. These color reproductions capture the wit and brilliance of the legend.—Sarah Moore, Pop Matters

Steven Brower’s Satchmo: The Wonderful World and Art of Louis Armstrong is a wild book filled with incredible visuals that will make your eyes wiggle regardless whether you’re a fan of his music….It took Brower—best known as a designer—to realize what a visual feast this was…Satchmo has a solid overview of Armstrong’s career…”—Byron Coley, The Wire

It’s not so much an art book as much as it’s one of the coolest scrapbooks ever.—Peter Saltsman, Sharp

Much recent fume time has been spent amidst the pages of Steven Brower’s Satchmo (Harry N. Abrams), a book largely dedicated to the visual art of the last century’s premier pothead—Mr. Louis Armstrong. Brower was also responsible for that cool book of Woody Guthrie’s visuals a few years back, but this one is even bonnier on the peeps.—Byron Coley & Thurston Moore, Arthur

…a beautifully illustrated new book. It combines an eloquently-written narrative about the trumpeter’s life and achievements with page after page of richly-detailed colour photographs depicting Armstrong’s tape box collages. (4 Stars)
—Charles Waring, The Record Collector

… perfectly complements and enhances the visual art of Louis Armstrong…a fascinating and handsome perspective on a particular aspect of the various talents with which Armstrong was blessed, one that had previously remained unexposed to the general public. … a heartfelt tribute to the creative genius of Louis Armstrong..—Joe Lang, New Jersey Jazz Society

A beautiful book puts together hundreds of notebooks of collages never seen before by Louis Armstrong—Paola Genone , L’Express

… Satchmo…had a way with yet another instrument: a pair of scissors. Between sets, he snipped words and images from ads and greeting cards, letters, telegraphs, and photos of friends and fans, then pasted them into jazzy, colorful collages. Satchmo: The Wonderful World and Art of Louis Armstrong collects these elegant riffs by the most artful of improvisers’—O, The Oprah magazine

As chronicled in Steven Brower’s Satchmo: The Wonderful World and Art of Louis Armstrong (Abrams 2009), he then “adorned the tape boxes with collages culled from newspaper clippings, movie stills, ads, greetings cards, [and] photographs.” The results, like Satchmo’s best jazz, are both instantly gratifying and worthy of deeper analysis.—The Utne Reader

I was just interviewed by Pat Williams on WBDO-AM, it airs online this Saturday, August 8, at 5am (!)

So things keep rolling along. More as it occurs.