Frank Trumbauer & Bix Beiderbecke: I'm Coming Virginia


I'm Coming Virginia


Frank Trumbauer And His Orchestra (with Bix Beiderbecke)


Bix Restored, Volume 1 (Origin Jazz Library)

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Bix Beiderbecke (cornet), Frankie Trumbauer (C-melody saxophone), Bill Rank (trombone), Jimmy Dorsey (alto sax, clarinet), Eddie Lang (guitar),

Doc Ryker (alto sax), Itzy Riskin (piano), Chauncey Morehouse (drums)


Recorded: New York, May 13, 1927


Rating: 98/100 (learn more)

In this, his longest solo, Bix is at the height of his powers. He eschews the gutbucket growls and half-valves that were just becoming popular with Duke Ellington and instead digs deep into the melody. In true Impressionist style, with all the manly restraint of Henry James, he suggests rather than declaims the tune’s dark melancholy, taking Trumbauer’s solo – the handoff is just perfect – and gently refining it. His “correlated” phrases (Bix’s term) build, one on top of the other, until Bix finally leaps up to a (relatively) high register and delivers what Richard Sudhalter rather dramatically described as “Caravaggio-like shafts of light.”

Reviewer: Brendan Wolfe

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Related Links

Bixology, an excerpt from a book by Brendan Wolfe
The Dozens: Twelve Essential Bix Beiderbecke Performances by Brendan Wolfe
Remembering Bix by Ted Gioia

Bix Beiderbecke from’s Encyclopedia of Jazz Musicians

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  • 1 Jimmy Lohman // Mar 10, 2009 at 08:05 PM
    Check out this recent version of I'm Coming Virginia based on the Trumbauer/Bix classic: