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Steps Ahead was formed by vibraphonist Mike Mainieri as a vehicle to bring together some New York virtuosi in a fusion group.

The line-up on Step By Step (December 1980) included tenor saxophonist Michael Brecker, pianist Don Grolnick, bassist Eddie Gomez, and drummer Steve Gadd. The supergroup continued to supply technical mastery but little emotion on Paradox (1982), with Peter Erskine replacing Gadd, and Steps Ahead (1983), with Eliane Elias replacing Grolnick (who nonetheless contributed the best track, Pools), before going electronic with Modern Times (Elektra, 1984), thanks to new keyboardist Warren Bernhardt.

According to the website NYC Records, which include's Mainieri's biographical sketch and touring schedule with Steps Ahead, the 2007 instantiation of Steps Ahead includes: Mainieri (vibes), Bill Evans (sax; not to be confused with the late jazz pianist also named Bill Evans), Bryan Baker (guitar), Anthony Jackson (bass), and Steve Smith (drums), a former member of the rock group Journey. On some stops of the tour, Etienne Mbappe is listed as filling in for Jackson.

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  • 1979 – present (41 years)
  • Eddie Gomez Michael Brecker Michael Cain Mike Mainieri Mike Stern … Peter Erskine Steve Khan

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