How To Sing Like Louis Armstrong (The World Greatest Trumpeter)

Are you ready to uncover the science of how to sing like Louis Armstrong?.


Right here, we are going to assess the elements that make up the beautiful voice of one of the finest trumpeters and vocalists to represent jazz music via an objective lens.

Did you know?

The legendary King Oliver mentored Louis, and he followed him to play in Creole Jazz Band of Chicago in 1922?

Well, more about that later.

Here is a highlight of the key things discussed in this post. 

  • An actionable guide on how to sing like Louis Armstrong
  • Answers to FAQs on singing like Satchmo
  • As well as other interesting revelations about this legendary artist.

Shall we proceed?

For starters:

An Actionable Guide On How To Sing Like Louis Armstrong

Vocal fry 

Vocal fry is a technique that can be accessed by everyone so long as you are using the right singing techniques. Vocal fry refers to deep, breathy, and vibratory sounds at a low volume.

Vocal fry is a technique that adds intensity, warmth, timbre, and richness to the quality of the voice.

You can access your vocal fry by simply singing a low note then dropping it until you reach the point where your voice begins to crack.

Vocal distortion

We believe the raspiness of Louis Armstrong to be a product of poor vocal techniques. According to Writer Terry, Armstrong developed nodules on his vocal cords due to a cold he had and the surgeries he underwent in 1936 and 1937 were unsuccessful.

You probably find this unappealing.

Experiment with this approach to develop healthy vocal distortion in your vocals. 

  • Learn open throat techniques
  • Incorporate proper breath support into your singing
  • Assume correct posture when singing
  • Growl with your mouth open for a few seconds.
  • Keep the grit light and then substantially add to its intensity as you get better.

Ensure your vocal cords are relaxed when pushing air through your vocal cords from your stomach.

Get a vocal coach

It is always best to work with a vocal coach to avoid distressing or injuring your voice.  A vocal coach would help you analyze the voice of your role model and with his experience help you create a plan of how to deploy the techniques that are worthy of being added to your vocal repertoire.

Watch his performances

This is an important step you can’t afford to skip. Watching the performance of Louis Armstrong sums up the research stage.

This activity plays an important role in helping aspiring singers understand how others approach music and on that basis improve on theirs.

By watching performances of Louis Armstrong you can observe how he engages the use of his vocal cords as well as his body languages while performing.

Do this in addition to listening to his songs for better results.


Consistent practice keeps you motivated and aids your development. The more consistent you are with your practices, the quicker you are able to excel as an artist.

Consistent daily practices are basic ingredients to illuminating your path towards singing like Armstrong.

As a side note:

Always warm up your voice before resuming practice to avoid voice injury.


Reviews are powerful. But reviewing the progress of your practices you are better able to understand what you’re doing right as against what you’re doing wrong.

In any case, you stand a better chance of evolving into a better singer if you diligently put yourself in check through objective reviews after each practice.

UNSPECIFIED – CIRCA 1970: Photo of Louis Armstrong Photo by Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

Did Louis Armstrong Invent Scat Singing?

Scat singing embodies the departure of a song’s normal course in favor of wordless vocables or nonsensical utterances, such as “doo-yah-dah-dah-dit-dip-bah.

While Louis Armstrong is cited s the first modern artist to deploy scat singing with his “Heebie Jeebies” song in 1926, there are instances of earlier traces of scat singing in history. For instance, Al Jolson’s scatting during his 1911 recording of “That Haunting Melody”.

Why Was Louis Armstrong’s Voice So Raspy?

According to the biography Pops by Terry Teachout, Armstrong’s voice first became gravelly due to prolonged cold playing jazz on a steamboat ca 1921.

In 1936 and 1937, he had surgeries to try to repair his vocal cords, which had the opposite effect.

What Was Louis Armstrong’s, Vocal Range?

E2 – A4 (2.4 octaves). Based on his range he could perform as Bass and Baritone.

How Did Louis Armstrong Start Singing?

After leaving the Juvenile facility where he trained himself in the art of playing bugle and cornet under Peter Davi and roe to the position of bandleader.

 He joined Fate Marable’s band and his time with him helped him improve on his songwriting as Fate forced him to learn sight-reading. 

His career began reaching prominence when he joined Oliver’s Creole Jazz Band upon the invitation of King Oliver.  On the insistence of Hardin, he established himself as the first great jazz soloist after leaving  Fletcher Henderson Orchestra.  Some of his recordings then include the Armstrong Hot Five and Hot Seven recordings of 1925–28.  

What do you know about “The Voice”? Find out all about Steve Perry’s vocal techniques here

Other Interesting Revelations About Louis Armstrong

  • The Karnofskys, a local Lithuanian-Jewish family whom he did odd jobs for while growing up loaned him money to buy his first instrument, a $5 cornet.
  • At 11, Louis was arrested for firing a gun and sent to detention at the Colored Waif’s Home where he began to receive his first music training under the tutelage of Peter Davis under whom he learned how to play bugle and cornet.
  • The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame listed Armstrong’s West End Blues on the list of 500 songs that shaped Rock and Roll.
  • Lil Hardin, his second wife, was the first person who demanded that Louis be billed as “The World’s Greatest Trumpet Player.”
  • Armstrong was posthumously awarded the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award in 1972.
  • Recordings of Armstrong were inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame.
  • Louis Armstrong’s recorded his last trumpet performance with the release of his 1968 album Disney Songs the Satchmo Way.

In Conclusion

Louis Armstrong’s career spanning over 50 years revolutionized the jazz genre. He achieved incredible heights with both his gritty voice and indubitable trumpeting ability.

Again, I hear you ask, “ is it impossible to uncover how to sing like Louis Armstrong?”

Definitely not! With patience, practice, and passage of time, you would eventually achieve your desire of singing like this iconic singer.