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Paul Whiteman

Paul Samuel Whiteman (March 28, 1890 – December 29, 1967) was an American bandleader, composer, orchestral director, and violist.

As the leader of one of the most popular dance bands in the United States during the 1920s and early 1930s, Whiteman produced recordings that were immensely successful, and press notices often referred to him as the "King of Jazz". Some of his most popular recordings included "Whispering", "Valencia", "Three O'Clock In The Morning", "In A Little Spanish Town", and "Parade Of The Wooden Soldiers". Paul Whiteman led a usually large ensemble and explored many styles of music, such as blending symphonic music and jazz, as in his debut of Rhapsody in Blue by George Gershwin.

Whiteman recorded many jazz and pop standards during his career, including "Wang Wang Blues", "Mississippi Mud", "Rhapsody in Blue", "Wonderful One", "Hot Lips (He's Got Hot Lips When He Plays Jazz)", "Mississippi Suite", "Grand Canyon Suite", and "Trav'lin' Light". He co-wrote the 1925 jazz classic "Flamin' Mamie". His popularity faded in the swing music era of the mid-1930s, and by the 1940s he was semi-retired from music. He experienced a revival and had a comeback in the 1950s with his own network television series, Paul Whiteman's Goodyear Revue, which ran for three seasons. He also hosted the 1954 ABC talent contest show On the Boardwalk with Paul Whiteman.

Whiteman's place in the history of early jazz is somewhat controversial. Detractors suggest that his ornately orchestrated music was jazz in name only, lacking the genre's improvisational and emotional depth, and co-opted the innovations of black musicians. Defenders note that Whiteman's fondness for jazz was genuine. He worked with black musicians as much as was feasible during an era of racial segregation. His bands included many of the era's most esteemed white musicians, and his groups handled jazz admirably as part of a larger repertoire.

Critic Scott Yanow declares that Whiteman's orchestra "did play very good jazz...His superior dance band used some of the most technically skilled musicians of the era in a versatile show that included everything from pop tunes and waltzes to semi-classical works and jazz. [...] Many of his recordings (particularly those with Beiderbecke) have been reissued numerous times and are more rewarding than his detractors would lead one to believe."

In his autobiography, Duke Ellington declared, "Paul Whiteman was known as the King of Jazz, and no one as yet has come near carrying that title with more certainty and dignity.

Birth and Death Data: Born March 28th, 1890 (Denver), Died December 29th, 1967 (Doylestown)

Date Range of DAHR Recordings: 1920 - 1954

Roles Represented in DAHR: leader, director, composer, violin, songwriter, conductor, other, arranger, session supervisor, speaker, viola

Recordings (Results 1-25 of 51 records)

Company Matrix No. Size First Recording Date Title Primary Performer Description Role Audio
Victor B-27267 10-in. 12/28/1922 Without you Paul Whiteman Orchestra Jazz/dance band instrumentalist, violin, leader  
Victor B-27432 10-in. 1/25/1923 Wonderful one Paul Whiteman Orchestra Jazz/dance band composer  
Victor BVE-27432 10-in. 8/26/1926 Wonderful one Paul Whiteman Orchestra Jazz/dance band composer  
Victor B-28600 10-in. 9/24/1923 Wonderful one John McCormack Tenor vocal solo, with celeste and orchestra composer  
Victor B-29532 10-in. 2/20/1924 Wonderful one Henry Burr Male vocal solo, with saxophone and piano composer  
Victor BVE-29532 10-in. 1/4/1926 Wonderful one Henry Burr Male vocal solo, with piano and saxophone composer  
Victor B-31548 10-in. 12/24/1924 When the one you love loves you Paul Whiteman Orchestra Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo composer  
Victor BVE-33541 10-in. 10/5/1925 Flamin' Mamie Aileen Stanley Female vocal solo, with ukulele and piano songwriter  
Victor BVE-34031 10-in. 12/13/1925 When the one you love loves you Jesse Crawford Pipe organ solo composer  
Victor BVE-34062 10-in. 12/21/1925 Flamin' Mamie Coon-Sanders Original Nighthawk Orchestra Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo songwriter  
Victor BVE-34228 10-in. 12/18/1925 When the one you love loves you Franklyn Baur Male vocal solo, with orchestra composer  
Victor BVE-36445 10-in. 10/4/1926 Dreaming the waltz away Jesse Crawford Pipe organ solo composer  
Victor BVE-38309 10-in. 3/29/1927 Song of the wanderer Paul Whiteman Orchestra Jazz/dance band leader  
Victor BVE-40945 10-in. 11/25/1927 Mary (What are you waiting for?) Bing Crosby ; Paul Whiteman Orchestra Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo director  
Victor CVE-43116 12-in. 2/27/1928 Chloe Paul Whiteman Concert Orchestra Orchestra, with male vocal solo director  
Victor BVE-49026 10-in. 12/28/1928 Gypsy Nathaniel Shilkret ; Victor Orchestra Orchestra, with male vocal solo composer  
Victor BS-73303 10-in. 8/16/1932 Four talks announcing the #84 Victor machine Paul Whiteman Promotional talk speaker  
Victor BS-73311 10-in. 8/22/1932 Three talks announcing the #84 Victor machine Fred Erdman Promotional talk speaker  
Victor BS-73389 10-in. 9/13/1932 Spot broadcast Fred Erdman Promotional talk speaker  
Victor CS-75028 12-in. 2/2/1933 Night and day Phil Dewey ; Paul Whiteman Orchestra ; Pickens Sisters Jazz/dance band, with mixed vocal quartet director  
Victor CS-75030 12-in. 2/2/1933 Medley of Cole Porter hits Paul Whiteman Orchestra ; Pickens Sisters ; Ramona ; The Rollickers Jazz/dance band, with female vocal trio, female vocal solo, and mixed vocal ensemble director  
Victor BS-92029 10-in. 5/23/1935 Wonderful one Frank Dailey ; Howard Du Lani ; Meadowbrook Orchestra Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo composer  
Victor PBS-042549 10-in. 3/3/1940 My fantasy Artie Shaw Orchestra ; Pauline Byrne Jazz/dance band, with female vocal solo songwriter  
Victor MBS-045016 10-in. before 4/5/1940 Mi preciosa Pepe Landeros ; Orquesta del "Río Rita" Instrumental ensemble songwriter  
Victor [Trial 1925-02-23-01] 10-in. 2/23/1925 When the one you love loves you Bob Klier and his Tait's Entertainers Instrumental ensemble composer  
(Results 1-25 of 51 records)

Citation

Discography of American Historical Recordings, s.v. "Whiteman, Paul," accessed August 7, 2020, https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/104378.

Whiteman, Paul. (2020). In Discography of American Historical Recordings. Retrieved August 7, 2020, from https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/104378.

"Whiteman, Paul." Discography of American Historical Recordings. UC Santa Barbara Library, 2020. Web. 7 August 2020.

DAHR Persistent Identifier

URI: https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/104378

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