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Steve Redhead – His Story

Steve grew up in the Midwest region of  Minnesota for the first 12 years of his life. A time you could play with friends, and if you needed a quick snack you could walk a few blocks down the street and grab a husk of corn or two from the farm, say hello the to the owner, or reach up to any of the hundreds of apple trees growing in everyone’s yard. You could go swimming at several lakes in the area. The fishing was always good too.

Even at his early age Steve always dreamed of doing something with music, his school teachers used to tell him he was very aware of his surroundings, and during a class for music appreciation he was the only one who could identify the different concepts of listening to a musical piece on the record and put life into the meaning of the melody.

He loved the trumpet and wanted to play it for years, but times were not that well, yet his mother found a way for him to practice one. Without any lessons he managed to just play it. Yet, the real mystery is when he moved to Seattle.

In Seattle he played in the Jr. High school  band like all kids do. One day he walked next door to his uncle’s  house and sat down and started playing the piano. Not just hitting the keys, yes there was a tad of a learning curve, but within a few days he was actually playing cords and melodies which to his uncle was a complete shock.

Steve tinkered with the piano when he had time to go over and play, but like a lot of families in the late 60’s early 70”s  moving was common.

During his high school years he still played the piano downstairs and composed his first song, and continued to play  his trumpet in the concert band, but then was exposed to his first love of Jazz when he was walking by the music room one day.

Again steve had a special gift he didn’t even know most kids his age could not do, and that was his ability to play in the upper register or range area.

That is from High C to about High G, A, with no problem.  Steve played lead trumpet for the rest of high school and played in the State Band and was given The Louie  Armstrong Jazz Band Award for his outstanding performance in the field of Jazz.

Steve then went to a local Community College and started to play with a very known artist by the name of Fred Radke. This is when the fun really begins.

During one of his first few weeks of playing lead trumpet in a Community College band, his instructor noticed he was struggling with some of the phrases of the music.

He asked if he could help, and Steve told him he really couldn’t read music. Mr. Radke was completely shocked he had played for all of the years and never really had the chance to get lessons to learn.

Steve explained he would hear the music and figure out his part as he was going. Mr. Radke with his heart and soul then gave trumpet lessons to him which for many years Steve has never forgotten his teachings and inspiration.

During his time at the community  College Steve was able to play more on the piano, he later did a composition with a small combo, and was told by his girlfriend he really needed to pursue this talent.

Finally attending Western Washington University, Steve played in several bands, and of course Lead Trumpet in one of the three bands they had at the time.

He found himself playing hours on the piano as well  and wanted to learn how to write his music down in a complete score form.

Steve had the whole score in his mind but couldn’t find a way to write it down. But attending a university had its own ways of doing things, and as most know, in the field of music its either sink or swim.

You had to attend the classes they wanted you to do or not at all.  Without more funds Steve could not stay the extra quarters or even years to complete the program.

All he had was a tape of some of the songs he had composed over the years which many of his friends kept on encouraging him to keep pursuing his piano music.

He graduated with a double degree in a none related field, even with the years of classes for performance, Jazz, Conducting and other classes, he didn’t have enough to declare music as a minor.

Twenty years later as life goes on, Steve still kept on composing on the piano when he was around one, but practicing was not available to him not owning a piano.

Until one day Steve gave his CD to a friend David, at the gym just to listen too. A few days later David  chased Steve around the gym verbally beating him to death, telling him what are you doing, get this stuff copyrighted and do something with it, if anything just for the love Steve had for it.

After years of encouragement from very close friends and even his best friends of over 30 years had failed, Steve finally took a leap of faith and purchased a keyboard and started to get into what his gift from God was really wanting him to do.

His first CD demo was a small collection of his work from over 20 years, yet those who first heard it could not believe it was written so long ago, and that Steve was playing the piano like many professionals with no formal training, and mostly by ear.

Steve’s compassion and  universal feelings of emotions can be felt instantly.

Most have said it was like listening to a big screen movie feeling without the orchestra. Every note or passage has a meaning, and not just something filling the space.

Steve now lives in South Carolina where he begins his journey to his passion. His dream one day is to write a full score composition for the big screen.

Not for the big jump into stardom, but to reach every person listening to his music. Steve has a gift of capturing an event in our lives and put it into a musical emotions with all of the feelings and compassion for each person to interpret the music in their own special way or life’s experiences being played out now.

In the world of traditional Irish music Steve brings unexpected melodic twists. From the first moment that I heard Steve play I knew he was gifted with a special talent. All I can say is "Enjoy!"

David Solomon
Hanahan SC
I can not believe how universal your music is. After hearing it for the first time, I felt as if I had visited another planet. You are truly gifted and I look forward to listening to more of your music coming soon.

Bob Johnson
Seattle Wa