After serving in the US Navy during World War I, Frankie Trumbauer became a professional musician, working first in local bands before moving to Chicago to play and record with the Benson Orchestra and Ray Miller. In 1925-6, he led a band in St. Louis with Bix Beiderbecke, who became his close associate. The two men later worked together orchestras led by Jean Goldkette (1926), Adrian Rollini (1927), and Paul Whiteman (from 1927). By this time Trumbauer's originality was easily discernible, and in 1927 he gained his own recording contract with Okeh, leading to the creation of some of the most important recordings of the era by white jazz musicians. These performances reveal Trumbauer and Beiderbecke, together with Eddie Lang, at the peak of their inspiration.