The six-time Grammy-nominated Dixie Dregs will perform with its original lineup for the first time in 40 years when the “Dawn of the Dregs” tour comes to the Scottsdale Center for Performing Arts this spring.
Danny Zelisko Presents the critically acclaimed Dixie Dregs 7:30 p.m. April 22 at Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts on Sunday. Reserved seat tickets for the event go on sale 10 a.m. Friday, Dec. 8 at http://www.scottsdaleperformingarts.org/.
“This tour is the result of the overwhelming requests we’ve received from a loyal audience of diehard Dregheads, and new fans who have never seen us perform live, but discovered the band for the first time through Steve’s membership in Deep Purple, or Rod as the drummer for Winger,” said Dreg’s bassist, Andy West.
“We can’t wait to play for them all,” adds West.
For guitar aficionados, Steve Morse needs no introduction, and his place in the pantheon of guitar greats is certain. But in fact, his career started with the Dixie Dregs.
The band traces its true beginnings to the band Dixie Grit, which started in a Georgia high school with Steve on guitar and Andy West on bass. Dixie Grit morphed into the Dixie Dregs at the University Of Miami School Of Music, where Allen Sloan (violin) and Rod Morgenstein (drums) joined up with Steve and Andy, who were the “dregs” of Dixie Grit.
The members of the Dixie Dregs remained committed to attending the University Of Miami School Of Music, which hosted a lively and talented musical community during their tenure, including future greats Pat Metheny, Jaco Pastorius, T Lavitz, and Bruce Hornsby, among many others. In 1975, the group’s demo album, “The Great Spectacular,” was recorded at the University of Miami and then re-released on CD in 1997.
After graduation, the band moved back to Augusta where Steve Davidowski (keyboards) completed the band that would eventually emerge and become known simply as The Dregs. The band paid its dues and honed its skills playing in bars and venues throughout the South in the mid-70s. They established themselves in the firmament of American instrumental music, seamlessly fusing rock with progressive and jazz elements to create a uniquely instrumental-driven style that has stood the test of time.
Based on a short demo and a tip from former Allman Brothers keyboardist Chuck Leavell along with legendary Allman/Dregs tour manager Twiggs Lyndon, Capricorn Records signed the Dixie Dregs to record “Free Fall” (1977). The success and critical acclaim of “Free Fall” announced the Dixie Dregs to the world, and after its release, they would become a cult favorite band that would have a lasting influence on much of modern rock.
Over the course of 40 years, the Dixie Dregs have released 11 commercial albums of original material, and a number of compilations, reissues, and countless live bootlegs also exist. Along the way, they have garnered six Grammy® nominations. The band has played with several well-known additional alumni and guests — among others, Jerry Goodman (Mahavishnu Orchestra) Alex Ligertwood (Santana) and Jordan Rudess (Dream Theater) — and its original band members have played and recorded on well over 300 releases (including Deep Purple/Kansas (Steve Morse) and Winger/Jelly Jam (Rod Morgenstein).
Doors open at 6:30 p.m. Tickets ($85, $60, and $45) are available at Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts, 7380 E. 2nd St., in Scottsdale, or online at www.scottsdaleperformingarts.com. To charge by phone, call 480-847-4681. All tickets are subject to facility and ticketing surcharges. All ages welcome.