Justin Ruppel is a Toronto-based musician, composer, writer, former Simpsons Trivia champion, and occasionally a poor excuse for a scientist. He grew up in a small town in Grey County and attended the University of Toronto studying neuroscience and psychology. After finishing his degree, Justin enrolled in the Humber College music program and studied drums privately with Jim Blackley, Al Cross, Mark Kelso, Steve Mancuso, and Bob MacLaren.
He has become a regular musician in the Toronto music scene, performing in many different genres all over Toronto and across North America. He has performed or recorded in many different genres with many wonderful artists including Al Tuck, Simone Schmidt, Michael Pickett, Jaron Freeman-Fox, Kirty, Devin Cuddy, Alex Pangman, Oh Susanna, Whitney Rose, Waleed Abdulhamid, James McKenty, Grammy Award winners George Massenburg and Pete Anderson, as well as with members of Blue Rodeo, Tafelmusik, and The Lemon Bucket Orkestra. He has performed at a diverse array of festivals including The WayHome Festival, Hillside Folk Festival,The Vancouver Folk Festival, The Mariposa Folk Festival, The Toronto TD Jazz Festival, The Ashkenaz Klezmer Festival, and The New Orleans French Quarter Festival. As a touring musician, he has travelled across Canada opening for Sylvia Tyson, The Proclaimers, Sam Roberts, 54-40, Dallas Smith, Natalie McMaster, Alex Cuba, and The Downchild Blues Band. In addition, he has worked on a number of theatre, television, and film soundtracks as a composer and performer.
Justin is also a fairweathered friend to the clawhammer banjo, studying with bluegrass and old time great Chris Coole. His banjo playing can be heard on the latest album by The Boxcar Boys and has been featured on CBC, BBC, and college radio stations. He is currently writing material for an original album . . .hopefully to be completed before his death.