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Struttin’ with Some Barbecue: Lil Hardien Armstrong Becomes the First Lady of Jazz



by
Patricia Hruby Powell
illustration by
Rachel Himes

Edition
Hardcover edition
Publisher
Charlesbridge
Imprint
Charlesbridge
ISBN
9781580897402

Awards and Honors
Kirkus Best Books, Middle-Grade - 2018
POTENTIALLY SENSITIVE AREAS
Discrimination: Racial Insensitivity/Racism, Violence: Mild Violence
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From the time she was a little girl in early 1900s Memphis, Lil Hardin was drawn to music. Her mother wanted Lil to be a proper lady and study classical music. But that was no life for Lil: music was no fun without the blues!

Author’s note. Further information on Lil Hardin Armstrong. Note on jazz. Note on segregation. Note on Armstrong’s family and estate. Time line. Glossary. Further resources and selected bibliography. Quotation sources. Index. Black-and-white illustrations created in ink and graphite.

POTENTIALLY SENSITIVE AREAS
Discrimination: Racial Insensitivity/Racism, Violence: Mild Violence

Details

Format

Print

Page Count

96

Trim Size

9" x 6"

Dewey

781.65092 B

AR

4.8: points 1

Lexile

900L

Genre

Nonfic

Scholastic Reading Counts

4

JLG Release

Mar 2019

Book Genres


Topics

Lil Hardin Armstrong (1898–1971). Louis Armstrong (1901–1971). Jazz musicians. Songwriting. Piano music. Trumpet music. Segregation. Biographies in verse. Memphis, Tennessee. Chicago, Illinois.

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Cover Art

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Praise & Reviews

Starred or favorable reviews have been received from these periodicals:

Kirkus Reviews*, School Library Journal, Booklist

School Library Journal

This biography in verse tells the story of Lil Hardin Armstrong, the first lady of jazz and Louis Armstrong’s first wife. While the book starts with Hardin Armstrong’s birth, most of the text focuses on her time as a jazz pianist in the 1920s and her influential role in Louis Armstrong’s success. The poetry is free form and peppered with bits of scat as an ode to early jazz, and it works well as a vehicle to tell the story of such a strong figure in this movement. Hardin Armstrong’s life is compelling, and readers will be inspired by her perseverance and rise to success in a male-dominated field and in the face of segregation. However, details about her life are less realized than in a typical biography partly because of the book’s lyrical format. Thankfully Powell includes a variety of back matter including more information on Hardin Armstrong, jazz music, and the rise of jazz clubs in the 1920s. The charming illustrations nicely enhance the text. VERDICT Recommended for most libraries, especially where biographies circulate well.–Ellen Conlin, Naperville Public Library, IL

Praise & Reviews

School Library Journal

This biography in verse tells the story of Lil Hardin Armstrong, the first lady of jazz and Louis Armstrong’s first wife. While the book starts with Hardin Armstrong’s birth, most of the text focuses on her time as a jazz pianist in the 1920s and her influential role in Louis Armstrong’s success. The poetry is free form and peppered with bits of scat as an ode to early jazz, and it works well as a vehicle to tell the story of such a strong figure in this movement. Hardin Armstrong’s life is compelling, and readers will be inspired by her perseverance and rise to success in a male-dominated field and in the face of segregation. However, details about her life are less realized than in a typical biography partly because of the book’s lyrical format. Thankfully Powell includes a variety of back matter including more information on Hardin Armstrong, jazz music, and the rise of jazz clubs in the 1920s. The charming illustrations nicely enhance the text. VERDICT Recommended for most libraries, especially where biographies circulate well.–Ellen Conlin, Naperville Public Library, IL

Grades 2-6
Biography Elementary Plus
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Fascinating biographies and autobiographies will allow your elementary readers to look into the lives, thoughts, and accomplishments of the individuals who have shaped our world. And with 12 books per year, they'll discover a remarkable person each month.

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Interests
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Biography Elementary Plus
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