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Blues Trombone? Leon "Pee Wee" Whittaker Will Make You a Believer

Pee Wee playing his trombone

Leon "Pee Wee" Whittaker grew up in a musicial family. Born an only child in Newellton, Louisiana, he learned how to play several instruments over his lifetime, but he was remembered most as a trombonist.

In 1935, Whittaker and his horn took off to Monroe, Louisiana and joined the band Rabbit Foots Minstrels. During his time with the band he toured up and down the Mississippi River.

Whittaker settled in Ferriday, Louisiana, in 1954 where he became a part of the legendary band at Haney's Big House.  He was an influential musician who continues to influence the next generation of performers in the Delta and beyond.

Whittaker retired in 1963 and was inducted into the Hall of Master Folk Artists in 1982. 

Whittaker passed away at the age of 87 in 1993, and in 2002 he was inducted into the Music Museum and Hall of Fame in Ferriday.

The only recordings available of Whittaker and his blues trombone are those he made with Hezekiah Early.  

Byway Blues is produced with the generous support of Washington Wine and Spirits, the Entergy Charitable Foundation, and the Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities.