Personalities | Lil Hardin Armstrong | Twenties | Jazz & Blues
(Piano, vocals, arranger, 1898–1971)
Memphis-born pianist Lillian Hardin joined King Oliver’s Creole Jazz Band in Chicago during the summer of 1921 and married fellow band member Louis Armstrong in 1924. She played on Armstrong’s Hot Five and Hot Seven recordings and also received some composer credits. The couple separated in 1931 and were divorced in 1938. Lil subsequently worked as the house pianist at Decca Records and recorded up until 1961, remaining active on the Chicago club scene. She died during a performance of ‘St. Louis Blues’ at a Louis Armstrong memorial concert in Chicago.
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