Biography All Music Guide
All Music Guide:
Best known as a sideman in Chick Corea's Origins and many other famed jazz ensembles, Steve Wilson developed his fluid style and versatility through years of study, touring and session work with artists like Jon Hendricks, Ellis Marsalis, Don Byron, the Mingus Big Band, Out of the Blue and Frank Foster. By the early '90s, Wilson was stepping out on his own as a leader, issuing a series of albums for the Criss Cross label. By the mid '90s his work began to earn increasing critical praise -- in 1997 and 1998 he was named in a Downbeat critics poll as a "talent deserving wider recognition" for both soprano and alto saxophone. Two projects in the late '90s especially highlighted Wilson's strengths; Avashai Cohen's 1998 album, Adama, was a beautiful exploration of Middle Eastern sensuality that often seemed hung on Wilson's bright and flowing sax lines. His own 1999 project for Concord records, Generations, showed off Wilson's flexibility, by bringing together a multi-generational cast of players, including Ben Riley, Ray Drummond and Mulgrew Miller. Passages appeared the following year.