Buck Hill (musician)

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Buck Hill
Birth nameRoger Wendell Hill
Born(1927-02-13)February 13, 1927
Washington, D.C., U.S.
DiedMarch 20, 2017(2017-03-20) (aged 90)
Greenbelt, Maryland, U.S.
Occupation(s)Musician, composer
Instrument(s)Saxophone, clarinet

Roger Wendell "Buck" Hill (February 13, 1927 – March 20, 2017) was an American jazz tenor and soprano saxophonist.[1]

Hill began playing professionally in 1943 but held a day job as a mailman in his birthplace of Washington, D.C. for over thirty years. He played with Charlie Byrd in 1958-59, but was only occasionally active during the 1960s. He began recording extensively as a leader in the 1970s, but continued recording with others, such as an album with the Washington-area trumpeter Allan Houser in 1973.[2]

Hill died at his home in Greenbelt, Maryland, at the age of 90.[3]

Buck Hill Mural
Buck Hill Mural by artist Joe Pagac unveiled August 27, 2019

A tribute mural, sponsored by the District of Columbia Department of Public Works MuralsDC project and donated by Snell Properties, featuring Hill playing a saxophone in his mailman uniform, was unveiled on August 27, 2019, which Washington, DC Mayor Muriel Bowser declared “Roger Wendell Buck Hill Day” in the city. The mural, at just over 70 feet, is the tallest tribute mural in the nation's capital. It is located at 1925 14th Street, NW, on the side of the Elysium Fourteen building at the intersection of 14th and the historic U Street Corridor in northwest, DC, where noted African American artists performed from the 1920-1960s. The mural was painted by Tucson, AZ artist Joe Pagac.


As leader[edit]

As sideman[edit]

With Charlie Byrd

With Shirley Horn

With Shirley Scott


  1. ^ Gopal, Sriram (March 20, 2017). "Local Jazz Legend Buck Hill Dies At 90". DCist. Archived from the original on March 24, 2017.
  2. ^ Kernfeld, Barry, ed. (1988). "Hill, Buck (Roger)". The New Grove Dictionary of Jazz. New York: St. Martin's Press. ISBN 978-0312113575.
  3. ^ Schudel, Matt (March 24, 2017). "Buck Hill, jazz saxophonist and D.C. 'local legend,' dies at 90". The Washington Post.

External links[edit]