His father was a classical piano prodigy and until junior high school Evans studied classical clarinet. Early in his studies he was able to hear such artists as Sonny Stitt and Stan Getz live at the Jazz Showcase in Chicago. He attended Hinsdale Central High School and studied with jazz tenor saxophonist Vince Micko. He plays primarily tenor and soprano saxophones. Evans attended North Texas State University and William Paterson University, where he studied with Dave Liebman, who had played with Miles Davis.
Moving to New York City in 1979 he spent countless hours in lofts playing jazz standards and perfecting his improvisational style. At the age of twenty-two he joined Miles Davis. In the early to mid-1980s, Evans played with Davis and was instrumental in his musical comeback. Notable albums recorded with Miles include The Man with the Horn, We Want Miles, and Decoy.
In addition to playing with Miles Davis he has played, toured and recorded with artists such as Herbie Hancock, John Mclaughlin (and his Mahavishnu Orchestra), Michael Franks, Willie Nelson, Mick Jagger, Les McCann, Mark Egan, Danny Gottlieb, Ian Anderson, and Randy Brecker, among others. He is featured on the Petite Blonde album with Victor Bailey, Dennis Chambers, Mitch Forman, and Chuck Loeb. Two of his most recent albums Soul Insider and Soulgrass were nominated for Grammy awards. Soulgrass was a groundbreaking bluegrass-jazz fusion concept involving such musicians as Béla Fleck, Sam Bush, Bruce Hornsby, and Vinnie Colaiuta.
Although his latest projects are musically eclectic, his stylistic roots remain in the history of jazz saxophone, influenced by such players as Sonny Rollins, Joe Henderson, Sonny Stitt, John Coltrane, Hank Mobley, Stan Getz, and Steve Grossman. 3.) San Francisco Bay Area musician and Virginia native Bill Evans has been involved with bluegrass music and the banjo for over twenty-five years as a player, teacher, writer, and historian. He occupies a unique niche in the banjo world: celebrated worldwide for his traditional and progressive bluegrass banjo styles as well as his innovative original compositions, he also enjoys a reputation as an outstanding instructor as well as being an expert player of nineteenth-century minstrel and classic/parlour banjo styles. Read more on Last.fm. User-contributed text is available under the Creative Commons By-SA License; additional terms may apply..
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