Biography

Paul Whiteman began his musical career as a viola player for the San Francisco Symphony. He enlisted in the Navy during World War I, and his musical abilities resulted in the Navy putting him in charge of his own band. After the war he moved to New York in 1920, where he recorded his first hit, Whispering/The Japanese Sandman. It sold more than two million copies, making Whiteman was an instant star. In 1924 he introduced the George Gershwin classic Rhapsody in Blue, which became the band's signature song. Whiteman had the foresight to hire some of the best jazz musicians of the era, including Red Nichols, Frankie Trumbauer, Tommy Dorsey and Bix Beiderbecke. Bing Crosby got his start with Whiteman in 1929, in a trio called the Rhythm Boys. Whiteman's band continued its run into the 1930s, but toward the end of the decade their popularity began to wane, and in the early 1940s Whiteman took a job as musical director for the American Broadcasting Co., a position he kept into the '60s. He would put together his band every so often during that period, and in the early 1960s they even managed to secure engagements in Las Vegas, after which Whiteman retired.

Date of Birth 28 March 1890, Denver, Colorado, USA

Date of Death 29 December 1967, Doylestown, Pennsylvania, USA  (heart attack)

Paul Whiteman began his musical career as a viola player for the San Francisco Symphony. He enlisted in the Navy during World War I, and his musical abilities resulted in the Navy putting him in charge of his own band. After the war he moved to New York in 1920, where he recorded his first hit, Whispering/The Japanese Sandman. It sold more than two million copies, making Whiteman was an instant star. In 1924 he introduced the George Gershwin classic Rhapsody in Blue, which became the band's signature song. Whiteman had the foresight to hire some of the best jazz musicians of the era, including Red Nichols, Frankie Trumbauer, Tommy Dorsey and Bix Beiderbecke. Bing Crosby got his start with Whiteman in 1929, in a trio called the Rhythm Boys. Whiteman's band continued its run into the 1930s, but toward the end of the decade their popularity began to wane, and in the early 1940s Whiteman took a job as musical director for the American Broadcasting Co., a position he kept into the '60s. He would put together his band every so often during that period, and in the early 1960s they even managed to secure engagements in Las Vegas, after which Whiteman retired.

Date of Birth 28 March 1890, Denver, Colorado, USA

Date of Death 29 December 1967, Doylestown, Pennsylvania, USA  (heart attack)

Personal Info

Known For Acting

Gender -

Known Credits 14

Birthday 1890-03-28

Day of Death 1967-12-29

Place of Birth -

Official Site -

Also Known As

  • The King of Jazz
  • Paul Samuel Whiteman

Acting TV ShowsMovies

1955 America's Greatest Bands (14 episodes)
1950 The Golden Twenties as Himself (archive footage)
1948 The Ed Sullivan Show (1 episode)
1947 The Fabulous Dorseys as Himself
1945 Rhapsody in Blue as Himself
1944 Atlantic City as Himself
1941 Birth of the Blues as Himself, Paul Whiteman (archive footage)
1940 Strike Up the Band as Paul Whiteman
1937 Hollywood Hotel as Producer at Callahan's Drive In (uncredited)
1935 Thanks a Million as Himself - Bandleader
1933 I Know Everybody and Everybody's Racket
1930 My Pal Paul as Himself
1930 King of Jazz as Paul Whiteman
1930 The Voice of Hollywood No. 3 as Himself

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