LP Grannyphone 03314
On May 19, 1929, The Paul Whiteman Orchestra played at Metropolitan Opera House in New York, and a few days later they started on their trip to California to shoot the film King of Jazz by appearing in Philadelphia at the Opera there. In between those two appearances, C-melody saxophonist Frankie Trumbauer collected his orchestra consisting of Whiteman musicians and the singer Smith Ballew and did two recording sessions.
On the second of these they played a tune by another singer, Seger Ellis. It would be interesting to know who the arranger was. He allows a lot of short solos in his score. Andy Secrest leads and plays a couple of these on cornet. His playing is as good as possible in the style of Bix Beiderbecke, his retired precursor in Trumbauer’s studio group. But like Louis Armstrong once said: “They tried, and they tried, but none of ’em played like him yet”.
Other soloists are Joe Venuti, and Eddie Lang on violin and guitar respectively, who just joined the Whiteman band to participate in the planned film. Min Leibrook takes a bridge on bass sax and Izzy Friedman is the clarinet player. Then in the last chorus it’s Trumbauer’s turn to play breaks, and a bridge in his usual tricky, whimsical style. The busy drumming comes from George Marsh.
On the well produced LP that contains 18 track from May 1929 until May 1930 several tunes are from the Whiteman repertoire cut down to fit a smaller ensemble.