Louis Prima Poster


Jump to: Overview (3)  | Mini Bio (1)  | Spouse (5)  | Trivia (12)

Overview (3)

Born in New Orleans, Louisiana, USA
Died in New Orleans, Louisiana, USA  (pneumonia)
Nickname The King of the Swing

Mini Bio (1)

Born in New Orleans' French Quarter, Louis Prima longed to play jazz. When he was a child, he studied the violin. His older brother Leon took up trumpet while Louis was still quite young, and he soon followed in his brother's footsteps. He played in clubs like "The Famous Door" in the 1930s, and by the time the 1940s rolled around, Prima and his band were becoming well known. Like many other big bands, Prima always had a woman singer, his most famous being Keely Smith, with whom he recorded the classic "That Old Black Magic". She began with him when she was 16 years old, and he eventually married her. They were divorced in 1962, and he married 20-year-old Gia Maione that same year. In 1967 Prima voiced King Louie of the apes in the animated Disney feature The Jungle Book (1967). Prima died in 1978, but his music continues as some of the best jazz and swing music ever recorded.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: A. Nonymous

Spouse (5)

Gia Maione (12 February 1963 - 24 August 1978) ( his death) ( 2 children)
Keely Smith (13 July 1953 - 3 October 1961) ( divorced) ( 2 children)
Tracelene Melva Barrett (17 June 1948 - 18 June 1953) ( divorced) ( 1 child)
Alma Ross (25 July 1936 - 18 March 1947) ( divorced)
Louisa Polizzi (25 June 1929 - 1936) ( divorced) ( 1 child)

Trivia (12)

Already a celebrated swing singer and orchestra conductor, Louis Prima added his signature voice to memorable songs from The Jungle Book (1967) such as "I Wan'na Be Like You (The Monkey Song)".
Following his death, he was interred at Metairie Cemetery in New Orleans, Louisiana, in a gray marble crypt topped by a figure of Gabriel. The inscription on the crypt's door quotes the lyrics from one of his songs: "When the end comes, I know, they'll all say 'just a gigolo' as life goes on without me...".
Wrote and first recorded the Benny Goodman jazz standard "Sing Sing Sing".
He spent the last three years of his life in a coma, after undergoing an operation for the removal of a brain tumor in 1975, from which he never regained consciousness.
Brother of Leon Prima.
Had two children with Gia Maione: Lena Prima and Louis Prima Jr..
His music transcends many genres, he wrote with Barbara Belle and Anita Leonard, the standard "A Sunday Kind of Love", a song for Ella Fitzgerald in 1947 and later many others from The Harptones in 1953 (Do Wop) to Reba McEntire in 1988 (Country and Pop).
Among his many accolades, with such recordings as "Jump Jive and Wail" written by Prima in 1939, and "Just a Gigolo"/"I Ain't Got Nobody", recorded in 1957, he is considered by many as one of the founding fathers of rock 'n roll.
He was posthumously awarded a Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame for Recording at 1615 North Vine Street in Hollywood, California on July 25, 2010.
Brother-in-law of Madeline Prima.
Posthumously inducted into the Big Band and Jazz Hall of Fame in 1993.
Posthumously inducted into the Louisiana Music Hall of Fame in 2008.

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