"Leader of the Band" is a song written by Dan Fogelberg from his 1981 album The Innocent Age. The song was written as a tribute to his musician father.
Released as a single at the end of the year, it did quite well on charts, climbing to number 9 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. It became Fogelberg's second #1 song on the Billboard adult contemporary chart, following his 1980 hit "Longer".
An only child alone and wild
A cabinet maker's son
His hands were meant for different work
And his heart was known to none