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Louis Armstrong Plays W. C. Handy is a 1954 studio release by Louis Armstrong and His All Stars, described by Allmusic as "Louis Armstrong's finest record of the 1950s" and "essential music for all serious jazz collections".[2] Columbia CD released the album on CD in 1986 in a much altered form, with alternative versions in place of many of the original songs, but restored the original with its 1997 re-issue, which also included additional tracks: a brief interview by the producer, George Avakian, with W. C. Handy; a joke told by Louis Armstrong; and several rehearsal versions of the songs.

Louis Armstrong Plays W. C. Handy
Studio album by
Louis Armstrong and His All Stars
RecordedJuly 12, 1954
ProducerGeorge Avakian
Louis Armstrong and His All Stars chronology
Satchmo at Pasadena
Louis Armstrong Plays W. C. Handy
Satch Plays Fats
Professional ratings
Review scores
Allmusic5/5 stars[1]


Track listingEdit

Side 1Edit

  1. "St. Louis Blues" (Handy) - 8:50
  2. "Yellow Dog Blues" (Handy) - 4:16
  3. "Loveless Love" (Handy) - 4:28
  4. "Aunt Hagar's Blues" (Brymn, Handy) - 4:57
  5. "Long Gone (From The Bowlin' Green)" (Handy, Chris Smith) - 5:08

Side 2Edit

  1. "The Memphis Blues (Or Mister Crump)" (Handy, George A. Norton) - 2:59
  2. "Beale Street Blues" (Handy) - 4:56
  3. "Ole Miss Blues" (Handy) - 3:25
  4. "Chantez Les Bas (Sing 'Em Low)" (Handy) - 4:48
  5. "Hesitating Blues" (Handy) - 5:20
  6. "Atlanta Blues (Make Me One Pallet on Your Floor)" (Dave Elman, Handy) - 4:33

1996 CD bonus tracksEdit

  1. "George Avakian's Interview with W. C. Handy" - 2:44
  2. "Loveless Love [Rehearsal Sequence]" (Handy) - 5:55
  3. "Hesitating Blues [Rehearsal Sequence]" (Handy) - 5:38
  4. "Alligator Story" - 0:47
  5. "Long Gone (From The Bowlin' Green) [Rehearsal Sequence]" (Handy, Smith) - 7:53



  • George Avakian – producer, engineer, liner notes, reissue producer
  • Mark Wilder – engineer, digital mastering
  • Seth Rothstein – project director, project manager
  • Rene Arsenault – production assistant
  • Cozbi Sanchez-Cabrera – art direction, reissue art director
  • Steven Berkowitz – reissue series
  • Kevin Gore – reissue series
  • Randall Martin – reissue design