Paul Horn

Paul Horn. Flutist, saxophonist, clarinetist, composer, b New York 17 Mar 1930; B MUS (Oberlin) 1952, M MUS (Manhattan) 1953. He was a member in 1956 of the Sauter-Finegan Orchestra and 1956-8 of the Chico Hamilton Quintet.

Horn, Paul

Paul Horn. Flutist, saxophonist, clarinetist, composer, b New York 17 Mar 1930; B MUS (Oberlin) 1952, M MUS (Manhattan) 1953. He was a member in 1956 of the Sauter-Finegan Orchestra and 1956-8 of the Chico Hamilton Quintet. Through the 1960s he led a popular jazz group while working in Hollywood studios. In 1968 he recorded Inside, an album of improvised flute solos, on location at the Taj Mahal in Agra, India, signalling his move in a more reflective direction that corresponded with his then-recent involvement with transcendental meditation. The album eventually sold more than 750,000 copies.

In 1970 Horn moved to Victoria, BC and in the years following performed and recorded both jazz and what would come to be called new age music, playing flutes in several registers, piccolo, and alto and soprano saxophones. From his Canadian base, he continued to travel widely, delving enthusiastically into musical and cultural exotica. He visited China 1978-9 and 1982, performing there informally, and made three trips to the USSR 1983-8 - the first with what was effectively a US band that included his son Robin (drummer, b Los Angeles 17 May 1960, a pupil of Jim Blackley) and the third with Robin and three Vancouver musicians, Miles Black (keyboards), Rene Worst (bass) and Jim McGillveray (percussion).

In addition to recording in the Taj Mahal, Horn made albums or parts thereof in the Great Pyramid of Gizeh in Eygpt (1976), the Temple of Heaven in Peking (1979), and the Kazamierus Cathedral in Vilnius, Lithuania (1983). He recorded again in the Taj Mahal in 1989, bringing full circle what he has called his 'Inside' series. In Canada Horn had his own CTV series in 1973 and has prepared music for several NFB productions and other films. Several of his recordings in the 1970s were issued under the Mushroom label in Vancouver; others in the 1980s appeared under Horn's own Golden Flute label, established in 1982. Horn's autobiography, Inside Paul Horn: the spiritual odyssey of a universal traveller, written with Lee Underwood, was published in San Francisco in 1990.


Further Reading

  • Todd, Douglas. 'Spiritual pied piper with music for a new world,' Vancouver Sun, 7 Jan 1989