Ernie has been involved with woodworking since a very young age.
After retiring in 1998 he started to dedicate more time to working with wood. He purchased a lathe and soon was making a variety of items. Cups, bowls, salt and pepper shakers, and vases were a few of his projects.
In the summer of 2008 Ernie met his soon to be son in law Vince Redhouse. Vince had planned to ask Ernie for his blessing to marry his daughter Diane. During the visit Vince asked Ernie if he would ever consider making a Native Flute. Having never played a musical instrument before or having knowledge of tone Ernie's first response was "No". But on the day Vince and Diane were set to leave back home to AZ Ernie said to Vince that he had thought things over and was curious about how the Native Flutes were made. He asked if Vince would leave a flute with him so he could look it over. Ernie made no promise but admitted he was curious.
Wood Art By Ernie J
From the scenic beauty of the Pacific Northwest comes the sound of Cedar trees as Native American Style Flutes are made by Ernie Harrell of "Wood Art by Ernie J" in his workshop.
Ernie J's Story
What started out as a curiosity soon lead to a new found passion for flute making.
In 2009 Vince and Diane started what would become WindPeople Music. Vince wrote his first book The Traditional Native American Flute Using the Chromatic Method Book One. Vince had talked with Ernie about his dream of teaching the flute to Native American children that lived on reservations across the country and in the Fall of 2009 Ernie's new found love of flute making merged with WindPeople Music starting the first Native Flute Classes in AZ.
San Xavier Misson School Tucson, AZ (2009)
Since 2009 Ernie has continued to make flutes. His Flutes have given hope and courage to students as they learn the Native Flute and the songs of themselves. Ernie's flutes have played for graduations, Weddings, Honor Society Ceremonys, Jazz Festivals. His flutes have been used by a Two Grammy Nominee, Featured on CD's. Played in recording Studios, and performed before 1 million People in Rome Italy.