Born in Atlanta, Will Scruggs began playing sax at the age of 8 before going on to be voted Most Outstanding Member of the Enloe High School Jazz Band in Raleigh, North Carolina, and selected as the First Chair Baritone Sax in the 1998 Honor Band of America. At Emory University, Will was named the top college jazz musician in Alabama or Georgia by the Alabama Jazz and Blues Federation in 2001. While attending Emory he studied saxophone with Nathanael Fareed Mahluli and was also mentored by Gary Motley and Rev. Dr. Dwight Andrews. His greatest influences include John Coltrane, Cannonball Adderley, Johnny Griffin, Sam Bush, Bela Fleck, and Stevie Wonder. After becoming the first student ever to graduate from Emory with Highest Honors in Jazz Performance, "Mr. Scruggs" joined Teach for America and spent a year teaching first grade in Southeast Atlanta.
Will has recorded two full-length albums of original music with Cadillac Jones, an original jazz/funk band out of Atlanta. Their second record, Junk in the Trunk, was released in November 2003 on Harmonized Records, a subsidiary of Leeway's Homegrown Music Network. During his time with Cadillac Jones Will had the opportunity to sit in with both the Dirty Dozen and Rebirth Brass Bands, open shows for Charlie Hunter and Blood, Sweat, and Tears, and perform at the Knitting Factory in New York, NY. During this time he also made regular guest appearances with Savannah's Perpetual Groove throughout the Southeast and as far as California, where he shared the stage with Skerik, Jessica Lurie, and Umphrey's McGee's Jake Cinninger at the 2003 High Sierra Music Festival.
As a full-time musician gigging 6 nights per week in Atlanta, Will has performed with some of the city's finest professionals, including Francine Reed, Joe Gransden, Gary Motley, E.J. Hughes, and Dwight Andrews. In 2002 he was featured as a special guest soloist with the Dave Brubeck Quartet, the Emory Symphony Orchestra, and Emory's University Chorus. In addition to leading the Will Scruggs Jazz Quartet and Jazz Fellowship, he is a member of the roots reggae band Revelation and is working on a Masters Degree in Jazz Studies as a Graduate Assistant at Georgia State University.
Will Scruggs's first solo recording, Jazz Fellowship, contains four original compositions and features Takana Miyamoto, piano, Moffett Morris, bass, and Chris Burroughs, drums.
Will Scruggs plays:
Conn Soprano Sax - late 1920's Chu Berry
Selmer Mark VI Alto Sax - early 1970's
Martin Tenor Sax - 1935 Handcraft Committee II
"Keilwerth" Bundy Baritone Sax - late 1950's