Steps Ahead Meets Soulbop - Mike Mainieri, Randy Brecker, Bill Evans featuring Steve Smith and Tom Kennedy

Steps Ahead meets Soulbop

Mike Mainieri - vibraphone
Randy Brecker - trumpet
Bill Evans - saxophone
Steve Smith - drums
Tom Kennedy - bass

Steps Ahead meets Soulbop is a group of Kindred spirits that have toured together, laughed together and created some amazing musical moments over the past 4 decades. This group of musician’s loves what they do, and it’s evident when you see them play together. Each musician could be characterized as a renaissance man in their own right. Whether its jazz, rock or contemporary music, the contributions from these gentlemen are impossible to ignore and to this day, truly celebrated by countless fans around the world!

About Soulbop
In 2003 Randy Brecker and Bill Evans teamed up for a world tour. The music went anywhere from Bop to funk to straight ahead. After that initial tour, the summer festivals were all requesting their eclectic brand of contemporary jazz. With an ever-changing line-up of all stars, they decided to call their band "Soulbop”. Soulbop quickly became a crowd favorite on the "festival circuit. "

Primarily recognized as an award-winning jazz vibraphonist, Mike Mainieri's equally remarkable talents as producer, performer, arranger and composer have contributed to shaping the cutting edge in music. During the ‘50s and early ‘60s, he performed with such legendary artists as Buddy Rich, Billie Holiday, Dizzy Gillespie, Coleman Hawkins and Wes Montgomery. At the age of 20, he won Downbeat's International Jazz Critic's Award. In the late 70s, Mike founded the pioneering jazz/fusion group Steps Ahead, which included previous cohorts Michael Brecker, Eddie Gomez, Steve Gadd and Don Grolnick and in the early 80’s the addition of Peter Erskine and Eliane Elias. Steps Ahead under Mainieri’s leadership, continue to tour worldwide and will celebrate it’s 40th anniversary in 2018. As a composer, arranger and performer, Mike has contributed to over 100 gold and platinum albums. An active participant in the rock and pop scenes, Mike produced and co-wrote three albums with Carly Simon and recorded with Paul Simon, Linda Ronstadt, Billy Joel, James Taylor, Dire Straits, Bonnie Raitt, George Benson, Paul McCartney and on Don McClean's classic album: American Pie.
Jazz trumpeter and composer Randy Brecker has helped shape the sound of jazz, R&B and rock for more than four decades. His trumpet and flugelhorn performances have graced hundreds of albums by a wide range of artists from James Taylor, Bruce Springsteen and Parliament/Funkadelic to Frank Sinatra, Steely Dan, Jaco Pastorius and Frank Zappa. Along with his brother Michael Brecker, they created the legendary band, the Brecker Brothers. A dual-disc release, Randy’s newest project was released on September 25th, 2013 on Piloo Records. Randy Brecker’s Brecker Brothers Band Reunion features a live DVD recorded at the Blue Note in NYC bundled with a new 11-song studio recording featuring members of the Brecker Brothers bands from throughout the years including Dave Sanborn, Mike Stern, Will Lee, and Dave Weckl and Randys wife Ada Rovatti on tenor. As a composer, performer and in-demand Yamaha clinician, Randy Brecker continues to influence and inspire young musicians around the world.

Bill Evans is a world-class saxophonist and producer who made his debut on the international music scene in the 1980s originally with Miles Davis, (at the age of 21 years old and recorded 6 records with Davis) which led to playing with the likes of John McLaughlin, Herbie Hancock, Mick Jagger and Willie Nelson and Steps Ahead to name a few. With 24 solo albums to date , Grammy nods, and countless collaborations and solo tours, Evans has continued to explore a dazzling variety of adventurous musical settings as a pioneering bandleader, consistently winning fans in the worldwide arena. Evans “ Soulgrass Band “ was together from 2005 to 2016 and was in the forefront of the Jazz/ Americana scene recording five celebrated Cd’s. His “Bill Evans Soulgrass- live in Moscow “ was recorded following a tour of Russia in 2014 at the urging of the US state Department. Bill has consistently toured and performed worldwide with his own band every year since 1990. RECENT HIGHLIGHTS include touring and/or performing with his own Bill Evans Band as well as Robben Ford (Soulgrass meets Blues), Phil Lesh & Friends, The Mike Stern/Bill Evans Band for starters. In the past Bill had countless sit-ins with bands such as The Allman Brothers band and Warren Haynes .Evans will be spending much of his time touring with the Bill Evans Band in support of his new album “Rise Above”.“ Rise Above “ features vocals by the late Gregg Allman, Warren Haynes, Anders Osborne, and JJ Grey.

Tom Kennedy is an accomplished touring and studio musician who ranks as one of the top acoustic and electric bass players in the world. In 1998, Tom became an integral part of Modern Drummer hall of famer Dave Weckl’s band, a group he toured, composed and recorded with for over nine years. Tom and Dave have continued to perform and record together on various projects for other artists, including Mike Stern, Didier Lockwood, Dave Grusin and Lee Ritenour. Tom has released five solo CDs: Basses Loaded in 1996, Bassics in 2004 featuring Mundell Lowe and Joe LaBarbera, Just for the Record in 2011 featuring Lee Ritenour, Renee Rosnes and George Garzone. His most recent solo project, Points of View, released in 2017 which also features Bill Evans.

Steve Smith's drumming, while always decidedly modern, can best be described as a style that embodies the history of U.S. music. In 1976, Smith began his association with jazz-fusion by joining violinist Jean-Luc Ponty's group and recording the 1977 landmark fusion album Enigmatic Ocean, which also featured guitarist Allan Holdsworth. It was while touring with rocker Ronnie Montrose a year later that Smith was asked to join the popular rock band, Journey, which brought his playing to the attention of a rock audience. With Journey, Smith toured around the world and recorded numerous successful albums including the immensely popular Escape (Columbia 1981) and Frontiers (Columbia 1983), both of which garnered the band many Top 40 hits. To date, the Journey catalogue has worldwide sales of more than 80 million albums. In 1985, Smith left Journey to pursue his original passion, jazz, and to continue his developing career as a session player. Smith began leading his own jazz-rock-fusion band, Steve Smith and Vital Information while still a member of Journey. Smith has also maintained an extensive touring and recording career, appearing with many jazz luminaries such as Mike Mainieri's group Steps Ahead. In the late 80s and early 90s the Modern Drummer poll voted Steve #1 “All-Around” Drummer five years in a row and in 2001, the magazine named Steve as one of the "Top 25 Drummer of All Time.” In 2002, he was voted into the “Modern Drummer Hall of Fame”. In 2016, Steve rejoined Journey to tour with the group for the first time in 32 years. On April 7, 2017, Steve joined Journey band members Gregg Rolie, Aynsley Dunbar, Neal Schon, Ross Valory, Jonathan Cain and Steve Perry for Journey's induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.



There is a $10.00 food or drink minimum per person. Dinner is served between 5pm-1am.

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