Based on the life of jazz trumpeter Bix Biederbecke and adapted from the novel by Dorothy Baker, Kirk Douglas is the Bix character, Rick Martin, one of the few white musicians to make it in the black-dominated scene of the 1950s. After chafing against the big-band sound he is mentored by Art Hazzard and falls in with some like-minded musos, Doris Day and Hoagy Carmichael. His star rises with the support of wealthy patroness Lauren Bacall, but when she becomes too possessive their relationship and his career begin to crumble. The real Bix died of alcoholism at the tender age of 28, but fortunately Rick mends his boozing ways with a little help from his friends.
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