Memphis Music Hall of Fame 2014: Lil Hardin


Memphian Lil Hardin Armstrong (1898-1971) will be inducted into the Memphis Music Hall of Fame this evening. She was already at the top the jazz world in 1922 when Louis Armstrong showed up in Chicago to play for King Oliver. She had been the piano player for a year. Hardin thought Armstrong looked country and clothed him. She also helped him work through his divorce. Then she married him. She played piano and composed songs for what are arguably the most important recordings in American musical history: The Hot Five and Hot Seven sessions. Hardin wrote "Struttin With Some Barbecue," probably the most Memphis song ever. She became a solo artist and eventually led her own all female orchestra. She collapsed at the piano in 1971.

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