Gil Evans

Inducted in 1997

Gil Evans is one of Canada’s best-known jazz artists, even though he left the country as a teen and toiled in the shadow of giants for most of his career.

Born Gil Green on May 13, 1912, in Toronto, Ontario, he was renamed Gil Evans after his stepfather, John A. Evans, his mother’s fifth husband. Evans spent much of his youth bouncing between Canada and the U.S. as the senior Evans, a miner, bounced from job to job. Gil and his mother finally settled (without John A. Evans) in Stockton, California in the late-1920s.

Career Highlights


Inducted into the Canadian Music Hall of Fame


Recorded an album of rearranged Jimi Hendrix songs


Co-wrote Birth of the Cool track “Boplicity” with Miles Davis


Started recording under his own name

Quick Fact

Won two Grammy awards


Evans met Miles Davis

Video Background


Quick Fact

Helped Miles Davis launch the “cool jazz” movement