Les was born on March 14, 1912 and was raised in Tower City, PA, the son of R.W. Brown, a baker and musician. (Quoting Les' own words) "My father's love was music, but he was a baker so we could eat." R.W. played soprano sax in a sax quartet that performed the popular music of the day, the marches of John Phillip Sousa. Since Sousa was known as 'The March King', R.W earned the sobriquet, 'March Prince'. As the son of the March Prince, Les Brown was playing music almost as soon as he could walk. By the age of nine, Les joined his first pro band playing using R.