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8904Re: [RedHotJazz] Re: Frank "Josh" Billings

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  • Nick Dellow
    Dec 1, 2011
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      The "train station" photograph reproduced in your excellent article on Josh
      Billings was almost certainly taken on October 28th, 1928, when Paul
      Whiteman and his Orchestra - including Bix Beiderbecke and Frank Trumbauer
      - visited New Orleans during a long tour. Both Philip Evans in "Bix: The
      Leon Bix Beiderbecke Story" and Jean Paul Lion in "Bix: The Definitive
      Biography of a Jazz Legend" give the date of the photograph as October
      28th, 1928, and state that it shows Bix and Trumbauer, not Bix and
      Billings. In the earlier biography "Bix: Man And Legend" (by Richard
      Sudhalter and Philip Evans) the photo is stated to have been taken during
      the Spring of 1929, when the Whiteman Orchestra was en route to Hollywood
      to make "The King Of Jazz", but other photographs taken during the same
      period show Whiteman to be fatter and older-looking.

      Another photograph taken a few minutes earlier (or later) than the one
      reproduced in your article shows the Whiteman band's clarinettist Irving
      Friedman, Bix and Whiteman himself on the same train platform.
      Incidentally, Bix, Whiteman and Trumbauer are wearing identical hats, and
      all except Whiteman are wearing similar grey suits. This may signify that
      the apparel was bought by the Whiteman office for the band members to wear
      during the tour. Whiteman is wearing a white suit.

      I am sure that it is Frank Trumbauer not Josh Billings in the photo in your
      article, and the evidence available suggests that this is the case. Another
      clue is the fact that in the Metronome article the photo of Bix and
      Trumbauer was reproduced courtesy of Frank Trumbauer.

      Finally, I'd like to extend my gratitude to Albert Haim for his help in
      providing important information concerning this photograph.


      Nick


      On 29 November 2011 22:58, gerry.paton <gerry.paton@...> wrote:

      > **
      >
      >
      > Apologies for reviving this old thread, but I just posted a lengthy
      > article about Frank Billings on my website. For those interested, here's
      > the direct link (PDF format):
      >
      > http://brushbeat.org/documents/FrankJoshBillings.pdf
      >
      > Also accessible via the articles section of my site:
      >
      > http://brushbeat.org/Articles.php
      >
      >
      >


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