Whiteman's place in music history is an obscure one. He certainly popularized jazz, but watered it down to the point of unrecognizability. Although he employed artists like Bix Beiderbecke and Bing Crosby, his music doesn't swing very much, played with a stiff precision that has only the most tenuous connection to the real thing. As dance-band music of the times, however, the recordings he made are majestic, chock full of sparkling arrangements and attention to detail. These 78 transfers sound as good as you could expect given the ravages of time; they stand as a nice cross-section of some of his best work. Whiteman isn't for everyone's taste, but there's some great music to explore on these ancient sides.
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AllMusic Review by Cub Koda