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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 201-225 of 859 records)

Company Matrix No. Size First Recording Date Title Primary Performer Description Role Audio
Victor B-30301 10-in. 6/18/1924 Walla-Walla Paul Whiteman Orchestra Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo leader  
Victor B-30302 10-in. 6/18/1924 Dixie's favorite son Paul Whiteman Orchestra Jazz/dance band leader  
Victor B-30366 10-in. 7/8/1924 Adoring you Paul Whiteman Orchestra Jazz/dance band leader  
Victor B-30367 10-in. 7/8/1924 Lonely little melody Paul Whiteman Orchestra Jazz/dance band leader  
Victor B-30380 10-in. 7/11/1924 Somebody loves me Paul Whiteman Orchestra Jazz/dance band leader  
Victor B-30635 10-in. 8/13/1924 Pozzo Paul Whiteman Orchestra Jazz/dance band leader  
Victor B-30636 10-in. 8/13/1924 Little old clock on the mantel Paul Whiteman Orchestra Jazz/dance band leader  
Victor B-30637 10-in. 8/13/1924 Where the dreamy Wabash flows Paul Whiteman Orchestra Jazz/dance band leader  
Victor B-30688 10-in. 9/2/1924 Hard hearted Hannah (The vamp of Savannah) Paul Whiteman Orchestra Jazz/dance band leader  
Victor B-30689 10-in. 9/2/1924 Bagdad Paul Whiteman Orchestra Jazz/dance band leader  
Victor B-30698 10-in. 9/5/1924 Doo wacka doo Billy Murray ; Paul Whiteman Orchestra Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo leader  
Victor B-30699 10-in. 9/5/1924 Whoa! Nellie! Paul Whiteman Orchestra Jazz/dance band, with piano duet leader  
Victor B-30816 10-in. 9/12/1924 My twilight rose Paul Whiteman Orchestra Jazz/dance band leader  
Victor B-30817 10-in. 9/12/1924 All alone waltz Paul Whiteman Orchestra Jazz/dance band leader  
Victor B-30820 10-in. 9/15/1924 Mandy, make up your mind Paul Whiteman Orchestra Jazz/dance band leader  
Victor B-30821 10-in. 9/15/1924 Tell me, dreamy eyes Paul Whiteman Orchestra Jazz/dance band leader  
Victor B-30822 10-in. 9/15/1924 My road (Mi senda) Paul Whiteman Orchestra Jazz/dance band leader  
Victor B-30831 10-in. 9/18/1924 Eliza Paul Whiteman Orchestra Jazz/dance band leader  
Victor B-30832 10-in. 9/18/1924 Rose-Marie Paul Whiteman Orchestra Jazz/dance band leader  
Victor B-31414 10-in. 11/17/1924 Tell her in the springtime Paul Whiteman Orchestra Jazz/dance band leader  
Victor B-31415 10-in. 11/17/1924 Indian love call Paul Whiteman Orchestra Jazz/dance band leader  
Victor B-31416 10-in. 11/17/1924 Southern rose Paul Whiteman Orchestra Jazz/dance band leader  
Victor B-31524 10-in. 12/16/1924 Oh, Joseph! Paul Whiteman Orchestra Jazz/dance band leader  
Victor B-31525 10-in. 12/16/1924 Gotta getta girl Paul Whiteman Orchestra Jazz/dance band leader  
Victor B-31533 10-in. 12/19/1924 Where's my sweetie hiding? Paul Whiteman Orchestra Jazz/dance band leader  
(Results 201-225 of 859 records)

Citation

Discography of American Historical Recordings, s.v. "Whiteman, Paul," accessed April 17, 2021, https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/104378.

Whiteman, Paul. (2021). In Discography of American Historical Recordings. Retrieved April 17, 2021, from https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/104378.

"Whiteman, Paul." Discography of American Historical Recordings. UC Santa Barbara Library, 2021. Web. 17 April 2021.

DAHR Persistent Identifier

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

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