The Phenix Horns, also known as The Phenix Horns or The Phenix Horns-Awesome, was an American horn section that gained fame for their collaborations with the musician, composer, and producer Maurice White and his band, Earth, Wind & Fire. The members of The Phenix Horns were Don Myrick (saxophone), Louis Satterfield (trombone), Rahmlee Michael Davis (trumpet), and Michael Harris (trumpet).
The group originally formed in the mid-1970s and played as a backing band for a number of other artists, including Minnie Riperton and Phil Collins. However, it was their collaboration with Earth, Wind & Fire that brought them the most recognition. The Phenix Horns were featured prominently on many of the band’s most popular songs, including “September,” “Let’s Groove,” and “Boogie Wonderland.” Their horn arrangements helped to define the sound of Earth, Wind & Fire and were a key element of the band’s success.
In addition to their work with Earth, Wind & Fire, The Phenix Horns also released a self-titled album in 1983, which featured a mix of funk, jazz, and R&B. The album included the single “Streetwise,” which became a hit on the R&B charts.
Sadly, the group’s success was cut short by tragedy. Don Myrick, who was considered one of the greatest saxophonists of his generation, was killed in 1993 during a home invasion robbery. Louis Satterfield passed away in 2004, followed by Rahmlee Michael Davis in 2020. Michael Harris remains active as a musician and continues to perform and record.
Despite their relatively brief time in the spotlight, The Phenix Horns left an indelible mark on the music world. Their innovative horn arrangements and powerful performances helped to define the sound of funk and R&B in the 1970s and 1980s and influenced countless musicians in the decades that followed.