Lenny "The Mule" Mulé

Inducted in 2001

Lenny "The Mule" Mulé was born April 3, 1948 in Brooklyn, New York. He learned to play harmonica at the age of 12 and then studied drums from age 16 to 19. He began playing drums in garage-blues bands and worked in an all black soul band in the early 1970's. He started learning piano in 1973 for a college requirement while working part time at a piano factory.

In 1975 he moved to State University at New Paltz, New York, where his roommate, Rob Rio, a 19 year old budding piano star, was a great influence on his early and life-long playing. He earned a degree in Cinema Studies in 1980 and then moved to Boulder, Colorado, where he soon became a street musician on the Boulder Mall. This experience enabled him to join the Blues Survivors in 1981. They played all over Colorado and New Mexico, often playing shows with many Chicago Blues Bands, such as Buddy Guy and Junior Wells, Legendary Blues Band, George Harmonica Smith, and Will Clarke. All during this band playing time he began to play solo piano in Denver, Boulder, Fort Collins, and even in a Sushi bar in Aspen, Colorado. In 1983, the Blues Survivors, thanks to George Sells, recorded a blues record, which was Mulé's first recording session.

In 1984, Sam Calabreese, owner of Zachary's brought Mulé to Phoenix to play solo in his restaurant. He moved to Scottsdale in 1985 and played mostly solo piano at Zachary's, Long Wongs, Backstage, Casey Moore's, and Tooters.

In 1987 he was one of the original members of Chico Chism's Blues Band. They recorded some demos and studio recordings, and a live performance at the Tempe nightclub, Chuy's, in 1988. In 1989 and 1990 he played solo piano for Balboa Cafe and the Backstage and the Alley Cat. In 1991 and 1992, he played with the Blue Dynamos and recorded some live music at the Herberger Theatre.

In June, 1993, he began a beautiful association with Baby Kay playing solo on alternate weekends at Baby Kay's in Phoenix. During this time he also played some band gigs at the Rhythm Room, and some solo gigs at the Blue Note and Blue Moose.

Parts of 1994 and 1995 were spent playing with Jimmy Morello in the Sting Rays, and recording a demo. Most of 1996 to April 1997 were spent playing solo at both Baby Kay's in Phoenix and in Scottsdale.

April to November, 1997 were spent recovering from various illnesses. Since November 1997, he has spent his time working weekends at Baby Kay's in Phoenix, while taking the summers off for working vacations in Colorado.

Back To Hall of Fame