Rufus Harley

Rufus Harley, “the world’s first jazz bagpiper”, was born on May 20, 1936 near Raleigh, N.C. but grew up in a working class neighborhood in Philadelphia where his family moved when he was two years of age. He started playing the C melody saxophone and trumpet at age 12. In his later teens he worked as a paper boy to raise enough money to buy a tenor saxophone so that he can play in the high school band but at age 16 he dropped out of school and worked odd jobs to help support his family. He continued, however, to take music lessons on the saxophone, oboe, clarinet and flute from Dennis Sandole, a Philadelphia area guitarist and music teacher. He made his professional debut in Mickey Collins’ band at age 18 at a local jazz club. He continued to play the tenor saxophone at local clubs for several years until he took up the bagpipes.

Read more
Building a Jazz Library
DVD/Video/Film Reviews
CD/LP/Track Review
Read more articles

10 Photos

Albums

Courage: The Atlantic Recordings
Courage: The Atlantic...
ABC Records
2006
buy
Re-Creation of the Gods
Re-Creation of the...
Transparency
2006
buy
[no cover]
Sustain
ABC Records
2005
buy
[no cover]
Re-Creation Of The...
ABC Records
1972
buy
[no cover]
King / Queens
ABC Records
1970
buy
[no cover]
A Tribute To Courage
ABC Records
1968
buy

Videos

Similar Artists

Support All About Jazz's Future

We need your help and we have a deal. Contribute $20 and we'll hide the six Google banner ads that appear on every page for a full year!

Fund All About Jazz's Future