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The Real Ambassadors

Louis Armstrong, Dave Brubeck, Lambert Hendricks & RossAudio CD
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)

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Songs from this album are available to purchase as MP3s. Click on "Buy MP3" or view the MP3 Album.

Song TitleArtist Time Price
listen  1. Everybody's Comin' (Album Version)Louis Armstrong & His Orchestra 1:45$0.69  Buy MP3 
listen  2. Cultural Exchange (Album Version)Dave Brubeck;Louis Armstrong;Lambert, Hendricks & Ross 4:37$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  3. Good Reviews (Album Version)Louis Armstrong & His Orchestra 2:05$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  4. Remember Who You Are (Album Version)Louis Armstrong & His Orchestra 2:29$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  5. My One Bad HabitDave Brubeck & Carmen McRae 2:36$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  6. Lonesome (Album Version)Louis Armstrong & His Orchestra 2:24$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  7. Summer SongLouis Armstrong 3:14$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  8. King For A Day (Album Version)Louis Armstrong & His Orchestra 3:39$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  9. Blow Satchmo (Album Version)Louis Armstrong & His Orchestra0:44$0.69  Buy MP3 
listen10. The Real Ambassador (Album Version)Dave Brubeck;Louis Armstrong;Lambert, Hendricks & Ross 3:07$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen11. Nomad (Album Version)Louis Armstrong & His Orchestra 2:52$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen12. In The Lurch (Album Version)Dave Brubeck;Carmen McRae 2:27$0.69  Buy MP3 
listen13. One Moment Worth YearsLouis Armstrong 4:17$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen14. You Swing, Baby (Album Version)Louis Armstrong & His Orchestra 2:32$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen15. Summer Song (Album Version)Louis Armstrong & His Orchestra 2:22$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen16. They Say I Look Like God (Album Version)Dave Brubeck;Louis Armstrong;Lambert, Hendricks & Ross 5:25$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen17. I Didn't Know Until You Told Me (Album Version)Louis Armstrong 2:57$0.69  Buy MP3 
listen18. Since Love Had Its Way (Album Version)Dave Brubeck;Louis Armstrong 2:30$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen19. Easy As You Go (Album Version)Louis Armstrong & His Orchestra 1:37$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen20. Swing Bells/Blow Satchmo/Finale (Album Version)Louis Armstrong & His Orchestra 6:03$0.99  Buy MP3 

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (June 14, 1994)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Sony
  • ASIN: B0000029FQ
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #307,213 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
4.2 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
23 of 23 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Something different, but an acquired taste September 18, 2001
Format:Audio CD
Essentially, this is a 1961-62 jazz opera about the great Satchmo serving as a "Real Ambassador" to the USA, as opposed to the segregationists (Brubeck loosely based this on Armstrong's refusal to go abroad during the 1957 school integraton crisis). Some of this is quite dated to listeners who may not be familiar with the events of the era (or the jokes about Jacke Robinson and Jackie Kennedy). The bebop vocalisms of Hendricks, Lembert and Ross (particularly the latter's high pitch) may also annoy modern listeners. However, Carmen McCrae's smooth vocal stylings with the Brubeck group are almost alone worth the price of admission.
And of couse, there's Satch himself doing perhaps his most message-oriented work until his recording of "We Shhall Overcome" shortly before his death. "Summer Song" has Satch looking back wistfully at his childhood. But the tour-de-force here is "They Say I Look Like God." This is perhaps his most moving vocal performance and most searing public statement against racism and you can hear him crying at the end (this ain't "Hello Dolly," folks). The reprise of "Blow Satchmo" at the end may sound silly and annoying at first, but you'll find yourself trying (without much success) to stop humming it to yourself for days afterward.
Satch fans take note-if you go to your record store looking for this, it's listed under Dave Brubeck (who wrote and played on this) and not Louis Armstrong. Strongly recommended for hardcore Satch fans and pop-culture historians.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fabulous and elegant April 9, 2004
By A Customer
Format:Audio CD
This is a wonderful CD. I was lucky to find it in a sale bin at HMV for 1.99 some years ago. I had no idea what it was but was intrigued by these artists -- all of whom I had enjoyed hearing at various moments. It was a revelation to listen to this period piece and very moving in some ways. What is remarkable is how it now -- to me -- seems timeless. I listened to "King for a Day" this week and was struck by its relevance to events in the world. What with references to the UN, ideological politics, diplomacy, chaos, conflict and American idealism. It blew my mind. I played it for a friend who was similarly taken aback. The deal is, it sounds almost naive if you listen to it "then" and yet, to listen now, is a whole other experience -- it now seems to be overlaid with irony. Applying the concerns of now, it is less straightforward. My friend suggested that King for a Day ought to be revived.
I love, also, the song Nomad which is sensual and delightful. This is a special and remarkable CD which makes you feel glad to be alive. I wish I could thank the artists in person for making it.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Classic July 18, 2000
Format:Audio CD
I had the privilege to hear this jazz opera performed at the 1962 Monterey Jazz Festival when I was 12 years old. It was one of the most memorable experiences of my childhood, and the album always brought back the excitement of seeing all those incredible performers together on stage. I've long since lost the LP, so I was thrilled to see it had be re-released in CD format. I found that I still knew all the words!
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A Historic Recording. Protesting with great singing January 27, 2004
Format:Audio CD
This is protest music. Louis Armstrong was not a kindly old airhead or afraid to stand up for civil rights, or anything else. He was a genius in music and a thinker about the real world. Here you see him leading a group of Jazz legends in a serious protest to the way the people running things in the USA, Republican, Democrat, and Dixiecrat were doing things in the late 1950s and early 1960s.
This record is part of the cultural stew that began brewing by folks who were beyond the witch hunt and inspired by the budding civil rights movement and revolutions in Cuba, Africa, and so many other places.
The title the Real Ambassadors has to do not with Louis as an ambassador of Jazz, but with Louis who had cancelled a Jazz Ambassador trip to the Soviet Union because he was so discussed with Eisenhower's refusal to give real support to Black people demanding civil rights. Louis had told the press he wasn't being anybody's ambassador unless Eisenhower had the guts to go to Little Rock himself and to the Black children into the schools holding their hands himself! Louis didn't play.
The great stars that joined together to do this, did this because they like many jazz people were willing to stand up for civil rights when it was a real fight, wanted real peace when Kennedy was threatening War in Cuba, War in Berlin, and successful launching a war in Vietnam that would go on for fifteen years.
Besides all that, the vocals here, the combinations of Lambert, Hendricks, and Ross with Louis and the incredible stylings of Carmen with Brubeck behind her are so wonderful, so strong. This is a great moment and a great sound.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
Format:Audio CD
I have been listening to the CD since the early 70's (on record) when I was about 5 or 6 years old. Not only was it a constant that was played by my mother, but it was always a welcome playmate. The mix of the various artists keeps it exciting. No two songs sound the same, even the songs that are sung twice! If you love Dave Brubeck,Louis Armstong and friends,you will feel like you are right there with them.They sing upbeat selections as wells as a few ballads. Good listening. (And singing, if you do that sort of thing!)
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
We'd been looking for this for ages and love it!
Published 2 months ago by Judith L. Leech
5.0 out of 5 stars POPS FOR PRES>
I have heard this recording many times on a local N.Y. radio station. The sound is O.K.,but i probably prefer the vinyl. Read more
Published 10 months ago by Michael Palermo
4.0 out of 5 stars Good listening music
We enjoy this type of music, especially at our vacation house. Nice to have collection of standards from such artists.
Published 17 months ago by PfromElba
3.0 out of 5 stars More Dave Brubeck
It wasn't what I expected. Too politically oriented. Only one or two good tracks. I wouldn't recommend this CD to my friends. Read more
Published 19 months ago by Dennis Sharp
4.0 out of 5 stars important American cultural artifact
The Real Ambassadors isn't only a piece of music recorded by an American jazz super-group. It is also an important American cultural artifact that provides the listener with a... Read more
Published 19 months ago by Garth Ross
1.0 out of 5 stars It was like new
It was as described. It played with no problems. I was pleased to find it after looking for along time
Published 20 months ago by David Trucksess
5.0 out of 5 stars The Real Ambassadors
This is marvelous. Love the messages in the music as much as the music itself. So many of my favorite performers.
Published on April 20, 2011 by Claudiajrj
5.0 out of 5 stars Naive, a bit pretentious, but great fun with great jazz people
Hard to believe, but Dave Brubeck tried getting this on Broadway. (Columbia Records went along; it issued the LP on Masterworks, under the OS/OL cast-album designation. Read more
Published on October 12, 2008 by Gene DeSantis
5.0 out of 5 stars Dave the REAL Ambassador
Amazing how no reviewer until now has revealed that this is a Dave Brubeck concept album, a jazz opera if you will, written by Dave and his wife of now 60 plus years Iola, for... Read more
Published on September 8, 2005 by Amazon Customer
4.0 out of 5 stars Wow!!!!!!!!!!!
At first with the opener, "Everybody's Coming" I was shell-shocked. I was puzzled. I thought can they make the end of the album without making a revelation or pulling it... Read more
Published on February 27, 2004 by Christopher Covais
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