Louis Armstrong, Featuring Arvell Shaw: How High The Moon

Here’s a fantastic video of Louis Armstrong handing the spotlight over to bassist Arvell Shaw for a bass feature on “How High the Moon,” from a 1963 performance in Sydney, Australia.

Shaw pulls out all the stops during the nearly 7-minute romp. “Show business,” he says, just before breaking out his bow to play all the way up into the stratosphere. Armstrong and the band come back in for the big finish, and Shaw finishes it with a bang.

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Share your thoughts

  1. Not a name I was aware of. Great solo. Great showman.

  2. J

    Amazing interpretation

  3. jimstinnett

    very cool

  4. G L Dryfoos

    At 3:37 he begins a solid quote from “Uncle Bumba From Kalumba Does the Rhumba”, a hit from 30 years earlier by the German vocal group Comedian Harmonists. Talk about reaching back into the deeper reaches of the pop music archives!


  • watching this and i’m like “before there was clarke, before there was pastorius, there was arvell shaw.” wow! this is real.

  • A shining moment! Thoughtful, puckish, musical – the BOSS,

  • Mike Matthews

    WoW – that’s just awesome!

  • Man!! That was killing

  • Vangorder

    Got Damn!

  • Mike Myers

    That was f*&*^%* amazing…..so much technique, speed, soul, and musical ability……I am blown away…..

  • John Shaughnessy

    That, right there, is the upright tone I strive for