Originally from eastern Washington, Steven has spent the greater part of his life making music in a variety of genres and venues throughout the United States. His sound has been hailed as fearless and evocative. He has shared performances with artists including Christian McBride, Chris Potter, Jeff Clayton, Bill Watrous, and others. His international performances include invitations to perform in China, Colombia, and Europe. Equally comfortable as a leader or a sideman, Steven brings a spirit of collaboration and generosity artistic endeavors.
Steven pursued music studies at Eastern Washington University and the University of North Texas in performance, jazz studies, and music theory which culminated in a dissertation on the free improvisation of Dave Holland and Sam Rivers on their 1976 album Holland/Rivers Volume 1. This research focused on a sampling of ways Holland and Rivers would interact in the domains of melody, harmony, form, and energy. His research interests also include using applications of schema theory for analysis of improvised music with the purpose of generating pedagogical perspectives that respect the jazz tradition and incorporate a cognitive approach.
As an educator, Steven has taught at Eastern Washington University, Marshall University, West Virginia Wesleyan College, University of Evansville, and the University of North Texas where he has taught subjects including jazz theory/improvisation, jazz ensembles, and classical theory courses.