I just listened through the Wolverines again. Jimmy McPartland, even as 17 wasn't really a 'bit player.' But without Bix, the Wolverines were just another white post ODJB band.
Trumbauer, Rollini, Venuti, Lang, for that matter Schutt and Russell, all stand on their own as players in Bixless recordings. But just about everyone seemed to derive an extra lift when they played with him.