Russ Evans



    When Russ was a teenager he played drums in a successful L.A. band and played guitar in his spare time.  About 20 years, wife and 3 kids/move to Utah/successful entrepreneur LATER, he heard his first live bluegrass music and was changed forever.  He immediately began learning the mandolin and eventually sold his businesses and founded the busy and award-winning bluegrass band Gift Horse. 

    Highlights with the band included performing under contract with United Artists at the 2002 Salt Lake City Winter Olympics, opening for bands such as the Beach Boys, Kathy Kallick, and performing live on stage with Jeremy Garret of the Infamous String Dusters. Russ has performed throughout the Western states at festivals, concerts and music venues. 

    In 1998 he founded the Birch Creek Bluegrass Festival on his ranch in central Utah, which became Utah’s largest outdoor, multiday bluegrass venue. But, California and home were calling him and in 2008 he and the family moved to Vista.  His mandolin influences include Butch Baldasarri, Tim O’Brien and most of all Peter Rowan. Russ is married to the bass player in the band, Sharron, and they have 3 children and a whole lot of horses, mules, donkeys and a couple of dogs and cats...