"Hotter Than That," Louis Armstrong and His Hot Five (1927)

Niels Tove Edward Hald’s vase, Rhythm, immediately brings to mind the innovative performance of Louis Armstrong on “Hotter Than That” from 1927. In both Armstrong’s cornet and scat solos,...

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Niels Tove Edward Hald’s vase, Rhythm, immediately brings to mind the innovative performance of Louis Armstrong on “Hotter Than That” from 1927. In both Armstrong’s cornet and scat solos, he showcases not only his melodic inventiveness, but also his rhythmic sophistication. His deep sense of swing, drive, and excitement was unmatched for the time period. Additionally, his three over four hemiola—in which he adopts a 3/4 meter that momentarily contrasts with the 4/4 time signature of the rhythm section—during the scat solo is particularly mesmerizing. Text by James Saltzman, Faculty, Manhattan School of Music

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  • Vase, Rhythm, 1929
  • glass.
  • Lent by The Cleveland Museum of Art, Dudley P. Allen Fund, 1938.383.
  • 48.2016.7