Louis Prima was born December 7, 1910, in New Orleans, Louisiana. He was an Italian-American trumpet player, singer, songwriter, bandleader, and actor. His music did not solely consist of one genre but incorporated a variety of different styles. Some of these included Italian tarantella, boogie-woogie, New Orleans-style jazz, jump blues, rock n roll, and R&B. He is known for having the talent to incorporate traditional Italian music with Jazz and swing music which not many are capable of. He is well known for singing songs such as “Zoomba Zoomba”, “Oh Marie”, “Angelina”, “Sing, Sing, Sing”, and “Buona Sera”.
He spent his early life constantly surrounded by music. His mother, Angelina Caravella, made sure that each of her four children learned how to play a musical instrument. Although the violin was initially his instrument of choice, he later began playing the trumpet. Since he was an Italian American from New Orleans, his music was able to display his true identity. His fans considered him to be extremely affable, and approachable as he was always willing to sign autographs and take pictures.
He moved to New York City by the mid-1930s and formed a band that was known Gleeby Rhythm Orchestra. In 1948, Louis Prima met his wife Dorothy Keely who was originally from Virgina. She was later given the stage neam Keely Smith. Prima was searching for a female vocalist to replace Lily Ann Carol, and Keely Smith was ideal. Her calm and collective personality paired with his energetically and created a juxtaposition that continues to entertained millions to this day, as seen below.