This is a tribute concert to Steps Ahead and Mike Mainieri with the Winnie Dahlgren Group and special guest George Garzone (tenor saxophone). The jazz fusion music is mainly written by Mainieri and Steps Ahead. Band members include Winnie Dahlgren on vibes and marimba, Steve Kirby on guitar, Steve Hunt on piano, Daniel Day on bass, Mark Walker on drums, and special guest Mike Mainieri on vibes.
Primarily recognized as an award-winning jazz vibraphonist, Mainieri is also a producer, arranger, and composer who has contributed to the creation of music on the cutting edge. In a career filled with highlights such as winning DownBeat's International Jazz Critic's Award at age 20; performing with legends like Buddy Rich, Billie Holliday, Dizzy Gillespie, Coleman Hawkins, and Wes Montgomery in the '50s and early '60s; and playing with the groundbreaking jazz/rock group Jeremy and the Satyrs, Mainieri has contributed to over 100 gold and platinum albums. In the late '70s, he founded the pioneering jazz fusion group Steps Ahead, which used contemporary sounds while experimenting, all while holding on to the music's compositional integrity. Steps Ahead grew to launch both young talent and new musical ideas. As an active participant in the rock and pop scenes, Mainieri has produced and cowritten three albums with Carly Simon, and he has recorded with Paul Simon, Linda Ronstadt, Billy Joel, James Taylor, and Dire Straits, among many others, and played on Don McLean's classic album, American Pie. He describes Steps Ahead as a musical sphere in which he is able to transport himself into various genres.