Born in Hampton Virginia, Jeff grew up near Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. In Philadelphia Jeff studied music at The Philadelphia College of the Performing Arts(now called University of the Arts) and received his Bachelor in Music and Music Education with a Jazz Minor. At The Philadelphia College of the Performing Arts he studied saxophone with William Zaccagni, flute with Adeline Tomasone, jazz theory with Larry McKenna and arranging/composition with Evan Solot.
In ‘Philly’ Jeff pursued a career as a free-lance saxophonist both in the classical and jazz worlds. Being a woodwind doubler he was active in the theatres, supper clubs, cabarets, jazz clubs and recording studios in the Tri-State Area(Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Delaware), Baltimore, Washington D.C. and New York.
Jeff already had been playing in many Philadelphia Area big bands while attending high school. Shortly after graduating college Jeff became a member of the Al Raymond Big Band and later becoming lead saxophonist of the organization. He also was a primary staff arranger for the band along with Larry McKenna, Grant Whisler, Bob Lowden and Walt Stuart. In addition, Jeff served as music director and conductor for many the band’s stage shows and tours with guest artists such as clarinetist Buddy DeFranco. Jeff also was lead saxophonist and arranger for the Walter Jay WPEN Radio Orchestra and Triple Threat Quartet (saxophone, clarinet and flute ensemble). He also supplied many scores to Music Minus One Records and Pocket Books. As a freelance musician some of the jazz artists Jeff has played with include Lou Rawls, Mel Lewis, Dave Liebman, Urbie Green, Brian Pastor Big Band, Ray Anthony Orchestra and Buddy DeFranco.