Louis Armstrong – The Creator Has a Master Plan (1970)

In 1970, a year before he died, Louis Armstrong participated in this odd but ultimately winning crossover project, singing (but not playing) pop tunes, including “Everybody’s Talkin’” and “Give Peace a Chance,” spiritual uplifters such as “We Shall Overcome” (featuring an unlikely “We Are the World”-type vocal chorus that includes Ornette Coleman, Tony Bennett, and Miles Davis), and three different edits of “The Creator Has a Master Plan (Peace)” (featuring Afro yodeler Leon Thomas). This was not one of the esteemed arranger Oliver Nelson’s better days: dig, or don’t, those hammy orchestrations. But even at less than full strength, Satchmo transcends the setting and the weaker material with his surpassing warmth, authority, and genial spoken asides. “Love, baby, love, that’s the secret,” he says in defending the sentiments of “What a Wonderful World,” here offered in a relaxed, less saccharine version than his 1968 original. More than 30 years on, no one spreads that gospel better. [Source]


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