Vincent Grant "Vince" Gill was born in Norman, Oklahoma. His father, J. Stanley Gill, was a lawyer and administrative law judge who played in a country music band part-time and encouraged Gill to pursue a music career. At the encouragement of his father, Gill learned to play several instruments, including the banjo and guitar, before he started high school at Oklahoma City's Northwest Classen High School. He first played with a teenage band called Bluegrass Revues in the late 1970s. The other members were: Billy Perry on the banjo, Bobby Clark on the mandolin and Mike Perry on the bass.
While in high school, he performed with Mountain Smoke, a bluegrass band that once opened for Pure Prairie League and Kiss. After he graduated, he played in a number of bluegrass bands, including Ricky Skaggs' Boone Creek and Byron Berline and Sundance; later, he became a member of Rodney Crowell's road band, The Cherry Bombs.
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