Wade Legge was born in 1934 in Huntington, West Virginia, but soon thereafter moved to Buffalo, New York with his parents, both of whom were musicians. Legge played more bass than piano in his early years, and it was with the bass that he was first noticed by Milt Jackson, who recommended him to Dizzy Gillespie. Gillespie hired him and shortly thereafter moved him to piano; he remained a member of Gillespie's ensemble until 1954, and during that time recorded a date in France as a trio session leader.
Following his tenure with Gillespie, Legge moved to New York City and freelanced there. He played in Johnny Richards's orchestra, and did sessions with Charles Mingus, Sonny Rollins, Joe Roland, Bill Hardman, Pepper Adams, Jimmy Knepper, and Jimmy Cleveland. Legge was one of three pianists recording as a member of the variously staffed Gryce/Byrd Jazz Lab Quintets in 1957 and appeared on more than 50 recordings before returning to Buffalo in 1959. In August 1963 Wade Legge died of a bleeding stomach ulcer. He was 29 years old.
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With Jimmy Cleveland
- Introducing Jimmy Cleveland and His All Stars (EmArcy, 1955)
With Dizzy Gillespie
- The Great Blue Star Sessions 1952-1953 (EmArcy, 1952-53 )
- Afro (Norgran, 1954)
- Dizzy and Strings (Norgran, 1954)
- Jazz Recital (Norgran, 1955)
With Gigi Gryce
With Milt Jackson
With Jackie McLean
With Charles Mingus
With Sonny Rollins