Rudy Powell

Musical Artist

1907 – 1976


Who was Rudy Powell?

Rudy Powell was an American jazz reed player.

Born in New York City, Powell learned piano and violin while young and then switched to clarinet and saxophone. In the late 1920s he played with June Clark, Gene Rodgers's Revellers, and Cliff Jackson's Krazy Kats. He never recorded as a leader but worked extensively as a sideman throughout his career. Among his credits are Elmer Snowden, Dave Nelson, Sam Wooding, Kaiser Marshall, Rex Stewart, Fats Waller, Edgar Hayes, Claude Hopkins, Teddy Wilson, Andy Kirk, Fletcher Henderson, Eddie South, Don Redman, Chris Columbus, Cab Calloway, Lucky Millinder, Jimmy Rushing, Buddy Tate, Benton Heath, Ray Charles, Buddy Johnson, Duke Ellington, and Saints & Sinners. He continued playing off and on into the 1970s.

Powell appears in A Great Day in Harlem.

Powell also belonged to the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community.

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Oct 28, 1907
Oct 30, 1976

on July 23, 2013


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