Jim Henderson is a musician, teacher, writer, and scholar. From his adolescent years until the present Jim has been a songwriter and a working musician. As a teenager he played in a band with the guitarist Les Paul's sons, and since then Jim has performed as a saxophone and keyboard player with recording artists such as The Temptations, The Coasters, The Pointer Sisters, Jesse Winchester, and Buffy Ste.-Marie. Since moving from Nashville to Durham, NC, in 1975 he has worked regularly with popular jazz and dance bands. Jim has composed music for film, television, religious services, and dance-in addition to writing hundreds of songs for his own pleasure.

An educator for more than twenty-five years, Jim has taught poetry, fiction, drama, history, music, and religious studies to graduate students, undergraduates, senior citizens, and elementary and pre-school students as well as to the high school and middle school students he has worked with primarily. For most of his career Jim has been a teacher and administrator at Carolina Friends School, an independent school in Durham, NC, that has received national recognition for the excellence of its program. He has also served as a faculty member with the Semester at Sea program, with Duke University Continuing Education, with Campbell University, and with several North Carolina community colleges.

A Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Gettysburg College (A.B.), he received fellowships to study literature and the history of religions at Columbia University (M.A.) and Duke University (Ph.D.). In 1995-96 a National Endowment for the Humanities "Teacher Scholar" award permitted Jim to study (and travel with his wife and two sons) in Europe, Africa, India, Indonesia, and Japan.

Ariel's Way is the first musical Jim has written. He began work on it during a sabbatical year in 2003-04. The show had its student premiere at Carolina Friends School in May 2005. After undergoing an extensive reading and revision process, Ariel's Way premiered with a professional cast and band in January 2010. A carefully crafted video of this professional performance premiered in October 2010.

I have known Jim Henderson for 25 years. His powers as a writer, composer, and teacher are legion. Jim understands the thinking of young people and knows how to challenge and foster their passion and creativity, their love of art, ideas, and life itself. He not only makes music, he makes magic.

Connie Toverud
Teacher, counselor, journalist
Oslo, Norway

Hear Jim play his saxes.

Watch Jim play two saxes at once.

P.O. Box 3102   |   Durham, NC 27715   |   919.923.6929   |   jim@arielsway.com