Steve Ayotte has been playing an instrument for as long as he can remember, but it was not until age 24 that he realized his calling was singing and songwriting. “I will always remember the exact moment when my mindset shifted,” he says. “I was lying in a bunk working on my set list for the next night. Out of nowhere this feeling washed over me. I distinctly remember thinking, ‘This is what I want to do forever.’” Now, Ayotte is a mainstay on the Phoenix and Scottsdale music scene, playing venues like Copper Blues and W Scottsdale and opening for major artists including Maroon 5, Lil Jon and AWOLNATION. “Performing is 100% about the connection with the audience,” says the Valley native, who describes his sound as a blend of folk, pop, soul and rock. “The more the audience engages, the better the show and the more exhilarating the performance is for me.” Here, Ayotte shares some of his favorite local haunts.
“I could eat at SumoMaya every single day. So good!” 6560 N. Scottsdale Road, Scottsdale
“I think The Scott Resort & Spa is one of the most beautiful spots in the Old Town area.” 4925 N. Scottsdale Road, Scottsdale
“Any time I crave breakfast, I have to go to Breakfast Club.” 4400 N. Scottsdale Road, Scottsdale; 2 E. Jefferson St., Phoenix; 2502 E. Camelback Road, Phoenix
“I work out in Gilbert at a spot called Funktional Fitness (213 N. Gilbert Road), but all my other friends in the Scottsdale area go to Glory Gains Gym (9171 E. Bell Road, Scottsdale) and I’m all about the community that both gyms provide.”
“I love Sip Coffee & Beer.” 3617 N. Goldwater Blvd., Scottsdale; 3620 E. Indian School Road, Phoenix
Photography by: From top: O’Shea Tometi; Constance Higley/courtesy of sumomaya; Herson Rodriguez/Unsplash