Alan Evans is a true Buffalonian – hard-working, humble, true to himself and fiercely loyal. He recalls growing up in the Queen City saying, “I was just lucky enough to be accepted at a very young age by seasoned musicians when I was coming up. I never felt like I didn’t belong or like I was just some little kid hanging on. That feeling of acceptance really made me feel like I could do anything in life. I’m forever grateful for that.” Fast forward to today and his passion has not only taken him around the world, but continues to lead him to new and exciting ventures. Anyone that’s been a fan over the course of his career knows this and will continue to look his way for anything he contributes to. It’s to nobody’s surprise that when the longstanding Soulive drummer ventured out and started another band, that success would soon follow.
Seemingly overnight, the Alan Evans Trio was born when Alan enlisted the help of Beau Sasser on organ and Danny Mayer on guitar to bring a fresh approach and round out the new outfit. Their sound harkens back to the days of Freddie Hubbard and George Benson, while raising the ante for the next generation. Each of the guys are outstanding musicians in their own right which allowed them to hit the ground running with their first album Drop Hop, released in 2012. They quickly established themselves and followed that up with their sophomore album, Merkaba, the very next year. The organ trio might have historic roots, but these guys are determined to carry that torch and continue to evolve one of music’s simplest arrangements. The subtle interplay of each member’s strengths is unbelievable for the short amount of time they’ve been together. There’s just a natural connection that Al anticipated when he assembled the band, and he couldn’t have been more spot on.
This year in particular though has been a great one for the guys. Not only did they get the chance to host the first live album recording at the Woodstock Sessions, but they also made their first trip overseas as a band. The jaunt to the UK was filled with new experiences, but the overall trip was what really captivated Alan. He explains, “The highlight of the trip has to be the trip itself. I’ve been all over the world many times with Soulive, but there was something really special about getting out of the country for the first time with AE3. It just inspires me to keep pushing forward.”
Even for someone as seasoned as Alan though, the return home is always something special. The Trio is headed to Buffalo Friday, November 29th, for a night at his old stomping grounds. When Nietzsche’s was brought up, Al said, “One thing you have to love about that venue is that it’s pretty much the same since my days playing there as a teenager.” He goes on about his hometown, “I just love the vibe in Buffalo. It’s just a very unique place in this world of ours.” We’re in for a treat indeed as Alan has always been known to pull out the stops for his Buffalo family. When asked about whether he would be doing anything special, Alan responded with, “I’m starting to write some new tunes for a new AE3 album and we have been rocking some of the new stuff live.”
Alan continues to prove why he should be considered music royalty in the Queen City, and Friday won’t be any different. Get there early, stay late, and take note, because the only time you’ll ever catch him slowing down is when the song calls for it.