Scanlon has been a very active presence in the Austin music community for over 35 years as a performer, session guitarist, and teacher. His resume includes over 30 years as a professor of music at Austin Community College; sideman credits on dozens of CDs, jingles, and movies; founding member of two award winning world music bands; and many orchestra and pit band jobs in the Austin area.
He is the recipient of Downbeat magazine’s award for Outstanding performance by a Jazz Instrumentalist and has received the honor “Russell Scanlon Day” by the Austin City Council.
Scanlon's has performed with the Austin Symphony and the Austin Lyric Opera and performs weekly with fellow Texas State University Jazz professor Morris Nelms. Professor Scanlon is also a member of Rey Arteaga’s Cuban Ensemble and John Mills’ Times Ten big band.
“. . . Scanlon, usually seen with the Samba Police, made yet another case for designation as one of the city’s most eclectic enlightened guitar heroes.”
Michael Point, Austin American-Statesman, August 23, 1993.