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. And now beginning March 2018, with much anticipation and in response to demand from devoted fans, the original lineup announces a return to live performance for the Dawn of the Dregs Tour!
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 rereleased 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-70’s. 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 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 eleven 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 (Steve Morse) and Winger/Jelly Jam (Rod Morgenstein)). The Dawn of the Dregs tour is coming soon to a city near you!