When the Beatles came to America in 1964 and took over the number one spot on the charts for 14 straight weeks, it must have seemed like their reign would last forever. Surely someone would topple them at some point–but who would it be? Few, if any, would have placed their bets on a 62-year-old legendary trumpeter and vocalist from New Orleans but that’s just what happened when “Hello, Dolly!” improbably became the number one record in the country on May 9, 1964.
Armstrong sounds positively energized by the popularity of his hit record on this previously non-issued set from the Circus Room of the Nugget Casino in Sparks, Nevada in June 1964. People who discovered Armstrong when “Dolly” became a hit had no idea that Armstrong was such a staggering musical genius, but as this set makes clear, if you went to see him perform during this period, you got a pretty complete picture of the wide array of Armstrong’s talents: the warmth of “When It’s Sleepy Time Down South” and “Blueberry Hill,” the fiery instrumentals of “Indiana” and “Tiger Rag,” the swinging hit show tunes of “A Lot of Livin’ to Do” and “Hello, Dolly!” each one establishing to all the kiddies in the audience that this fun-loving old entertainer was also a ferociously talented musician.
This Collector’s Edition features additional/bonus material, a second performance of I Got A Lot Of Livin’ To Do, Hello Dolly (Phil Harris introduces the band, both performed at The Hollywood Palace May 30, 1964) and an extensive interview of Louis being interviewed by Fred Robbins in 1964, just a few weeks before “Dolly” took over the number one spot on the charts. Additional features include exclusive packaging and a 20-page booklet written by Ricky Riccardi – Director of Research Collections for the Louis Armstrong House Museum and author of best selling book “What A Wonderful World” and contains rare photo material held in the Louis Armstrong collection.