One of your prime jazz-rock fusion ensembles ever, the Dixie Dregs combined virtuoso approach with eclecticism plus a sense of humor and spirit too frequently lacking in similar projects. Guitarist Steve Morse and bassist Andy West played together as high-school students in Augusta, GA, within a standard rock band known as Dixie Grit. When Morse was expelled from school for refusing to reduce his hair, he enrolled in the University of Miami School of Music, where he met violinist Allen Sloan, who had played together with the Miami Philharmonic, and drummer Rod Morgenstein. The three decided to form a band, and Morse convinced West to come to Miami and join. the Dixie Dregs completed their lineup with keyboardist Steve Davidowski. Their first album, The Good Spectacular, was recorded for a class project in 1975 and later released by the band (it's long out of print). Following graduation, the quintet started playing live about the South and got its break following opening for Sea Level on 1976, when a representative from Capricorn Records was impressed enough to sign the band. Mark Parrish, a former member of Dixie Grit, replaced Davidowski for their official debut, 1977's Free Fall. Get far more information about https://dixiedregstour.com/dixi-dregs-tour-set-list-2018.html
Their follow-up, What If, proved to become one of their most artistically profitable albums, along with the Dixie Dregs played in the 1978 Montreux Jazz Festival with T Lavitz replacing Parrish. Half of Evening with the Living Dregs contains excerpts from that concert. The group shortened its name towards the Dregs for 1981's Unsung Heroes, and added both vocalists and three-time national fiddling champ Mark O'Connor, whose old-timey playing style added yet another dimension towards the group's sound, for Sector Common. The Dregs then disbanded; the highly respected Morse formed his personal band and recorded many albums, later joining Kansas from 1986 to 1988, though Morgenstein hooked up with pop-metallists Winger.
The Dregs reunited briefly in 1988 to get a series of live dates, but a full-fledged reunion did not take spot till 1992, with Morse, Lavitz, Morgenstein, and Dave LaRue on the Steve Morse Band in West's place. Allen Sloan rejoined only briefly, with his position then filled by ex-Mahavishnu Orchestra member Jerry Goodman. Bring 'Em Back Alive was culled from the group's tour, and 1994's Full Circle was also nicely received. California Screamin' followed in early 2000.