Snow, Valaida (jazz) [Valada; Little Louis]
- Howard Rye
[Valada; Little Louis]
(b Chattanooga, TN, June 2, 1904; d New York, May 30, 1956). American trumpeter, singer, and dancer. Her mother taught her to play several instruments and her sisters Alvada (Alvaida), Hattie, and Lavada (Lavaida) (b 1914) also became professional entertainers. She was known as Valada and her sister as Lavada until 1931. Her year of birth is in doubt; the earliest known source gives 1905, but by the time of her death, at the age of “47,” she had lost four years by stages. However, City of Chattanooga records show the birth of an unnamed female child to J. V. and Etta E. Snow on 2 June 1904 and it seems almost certain that this is Valaida. Her first major engagement was at Barron Wilkins’s cabaret in Harlem in 1922. In the early 1920s she toured the USA in various revues, including Noble Sissle and Eubie Blake’s ...