Born January 21 1943 in Columbus, Ohio, Steve Potts comes from a musical family. At a very early age, he was fascinated by the saxophone after having heard his cousin, Buddy Tate, play sax in Count Basie's orchestra. While simultaneously studying architecture in Los Angeles, he also studied music with Charles Lloyd. But he dedicated himself to music after that by moving to New York to study with Eric Dolphy. He became friends with Ron Carter and frequented Coltrane, Tony Williams, Jimmy Garrison, Herbie Hancock, Chick Corea, Larry Coryell and Wayne Shorter. He played with Roy Ayers, Richard Davis, Joe Henderson, Reggie Workman and Chico Hamilton, the latter of whom he worked with for four years.

 

In 1970, leaving behind his New York life, Steve left to launch himself in Europe. He landed in Paris, and immediately started working with Brigitte Fontaine and performing with Dexter Gordon, Johnny Griffin, Mal Waldron, Ben Webster and Hal Singer with whom he enjoys a continuing musical and personal relationship ... not to mention the Art Ensemble of Chicago and other American and French groups.

 
He formed his own group in 1973 with Christian Escoudé, Boulou Ferré, Oliver Johnson and Gus Nemeth. He also met Steve Lacy at this time. They traveled the world performing together for over 23 years and recorded over 25 albums. This did not prevent Steve Potts from leading other projects such as accompanying Jessye Norman in 1982, or working with the African group Ghetto Blaster in 1986, or composing film music. He created a new group in 1990 and recorded the CD " Pearl " with Richard Galliano, Jean-Jacques Avenel and Bertrand Renaudin. As eclectic as ever he also recorded with Imaran a group of Touareg musicians and in 2000 released "Wet Spot" with a new quartet consisting of Michael Felberbaum, Stéphane Persiani, Richard Portier.

Also about this time, Potts started a very rich period performing regularly at the Sept Lézards club, where over a period of eight years it was possible fo invite more than 70 musicians such as Alain Jean-Marie, John Betsch, François Ripoche, François Théberge, Stéphane Belmondo, Médéric Collignon, Stéphane Guillaume, Olivier Ker Orio, Jérôme Rateau, Morena Fattorini, Romain Clerc-Renaud, to play with his three regular groups: Stevie and the Boogah Band (George-Edouard Nouel, Stéphane Persiani, Jean-Claude Montredon), the Institute of Advanced Harmony (Michael Felberbaum, Michel Edelin, Thomas Savy, Stephen Kerecki, Richard Portier) and Steve Potts and Family (Michel Edelin, Sophia Domancich, Jean-Jacques Avenel, Simon Goubert).

At the same time, Steve Potts started an improvization workshop, the Menilmontant Street Band which he participates at the Ateliers du Chaudron.

For the present, Potts is contemplating his next recording project, continuing to tour a bit, especially in Italy where he performs with pianist Gianni Lenoci and musicians around him, and preparing a surprise project which will be announced in the near future.

As you can see Potts is keeping on, keeping on !!!