...is an alternative rock band based out of Austin, Texas. The five-member band is made up of lead singer Shane Blake, lead guitarist Paul Devassy, bassist Blake York, drummer Sean Gibson and Parker Jackson on sax.
The songs on their debut CD are as varied and dynamic as the Austin skyline. It reflects RIVERSYDE’s alternative rock style, but features a range of musical sounds from ‘90s grunge vocals and rhythm guitar, to high energy drums and progressive bass.
“From heartbreak to relaxing on the beach or driving with the top down, this CD has a track that will fit your mood," said Paul Devassy, lead guitarist.
"My ‘90s rock voice, our ‘80s classic rock guitarist, hardcore drummer, and progressive bass player provide something for everyone. It’s all alternative to us," adds singer and rhythm guitarist, Shane Blake.
Like the music, the members are varied and come from all walks of life, but their love for music is the common ground. Listeners are drawn in by Shane's insightful lyrics and soulful voice while Parker on sax sets the mood. Blake and Sean complement each other well as the band's rhythmic duo and are the locomotive force behind the songs. Paul's guitar playing varies from melodic and soulful on the softer songs to blazing solos and biting riffs on the high energy material.
The band describes the tone of the album as one of longing and remembrance. Common themes in the songs include: heartbreak, reminiscing on the past, closure, and raw emotion. With emotive power ballads, high energy riffs, catchy hooks, and a frenetic rhythm section, RIVERSYDE is capable of a wide range of textures and is reminiscent of Matchbox Twenty, Pearl Jam, Fuel, Chris Daughtry, and Live.
Shane Blake is the lead singer and rhythm guitarist for RIVERSYDE. Shane grew up in the small town of Schulenberg, Texas where the need to find a creative outlet was a necessity. After football practice he played acoustic shows for friends and family, and later joined an alternative Christian band.
Shane moved to the Austin area in 2005 and continued to hone his musical talent. Although he had been playing guitar and writing lyrics for half a decade as a hobby, the singer/songwriter discovered his calling to play music as a profession while attending Texas State University in San Marcos. Unmotivated by the prospect of a nine-to-five career, Shane put the books aside for a couple semesters and began playing open-mic nights in the dimly lit bars and coffee shops around San Marcos. After a few months of solo performances, he came to the realization that he would need to enlist other musicians in order to bring the music to a larger audience.
Shane posted online ads during the summer of 2010 in search of other musicians and began the process of forming what eventually became RIVERSYDE. Within a year, the nucleus RIVERSYDE was established and they quickly went to work writing material.
"The idea of being a lead singer for a successful band started as a dream, but is becoming a reality with the talent and dedication of my band mates," said Shane Blake.
Besides putting over 40 hours a week into RIVERSYDE, Shane also attends Texas State University full-time, enjoys golfing, and brings confidence and a playful spirit to the band. Shane’s biting, emotional, scratchy singing style has been compared to a male Melissa Etheridge, and Eddie Vedder.
Paul Devassy is the lead guitarist and keyboardist for RIVERSYDE. The accomplished musician was the third addition to the quickly developing band. Undeniable skill and experience made Paul a must-have for Shane.
Paul first picked up the guitar at the age of 16, and developed his talent by learning from friends and reading books. After growing up in Indianapolis, Indiana, he graduated from Purdue University with a degree in electrical engineering. Paul moved to Austin in 2006 and currently works as a development and research engineer.
Expression is Paul’s main inspiration for making music. His love for music is obvious when counting the late hours he puts in after work to ensure RIVERSYDE’s prosperity.
“I’ve wanted this for so long,” said Paul Devassy. “It takes a lot of hard work to make a band successful. I essentially leave one job and then go to work at another. If I'm not writing or editing guitar tracks, I'm working on marketing strategies or making calls to line up another show.”
Previous experiences in numerous rock bands gave him a wealth of information on how to best organize and guide a band to success. He brings a practical and sophisticated personality to the group. Besides music, Paul enjoys mountain biking and baseball. He is a dedicated leader and organizer, who, although normally reserved, comes alive onstage. Paul’s progressive, melodic rock sound on guitar has been compared to Santana, Van Halen, and Paul Gilbert.
Blake York - bassist for RIVERSYDE.
Hailing from Azle, TX, he is the driving force behind the wall-shaking melodious groove in RIVERSYDE's music. He began with percussion for the school band in middle school, but quit in high school to focus on sports. After graduating high school in 2005, he moved to San Marcos to go to Texas State and where he picked up a guitar for the first time. After a few years of practicing and playing some open jams with friends and local musicians, he was recruited to play bass in a blues band.
Accomplishing only mediocre success playing shows in San Marcos and recording an EP, the band split up when the lead guitarist moved out of the country. After this was a short stint playing stand-in bass for a Texas Country band until he had biggest break of his music career yet.
"Combining forces with the energy and clever song writing of Shane Blake, the incredible solos and tasteful tone provided by Pauly D, Gibs laying down toe tapping beats, and Big Saxy makin' hairs stand up with his soulful saxophone playing, its impossible to not be pumped about what the future holds."
York's biggest influences as far as bassist go include, Flea (Red Hot Chili Peppers), Peanut (311), and John Paul Jones (Led Zeppelin). "
I’m in my last semester of Graduate School at Texas State and I own a furniture moving company. When I’m not playing music or doing school work I love to be active and play pretty much any sport. I’m an avid bowler and especially love snowboarding. "
Sean Gibson is the drummer RIVERSYDEis currently attending school at Media Tech Institute in Austin TX studying the art of audio engineering and live sound production.
Sean graduated from Plano West Sr. High in the class of 2008. After moving to San Marcos in 2009, He decided that Music Production was what he wanted to persue in life.
"I was always fastinated by recording studios and how the fundamentals worked. My first time in a recording studio i was 13, I fell in love with the enviorment and listening to my drums being mixed into the music being produced"
Some of the artist that influenced Seans drumming styles have been Todd Suckerman, Carter Beauford, Chad Smith, Tony Royster JR, John Bonham, Jose Pasillas, Abe Cunningham, Danny Carey
Parker Jackson - sax for RIVERSYDE
Supported by a grassroots movement of friends and family, RIVERSYDE is quickly gaining respect in the Austin area. Cage the Elephant’s song In One Ear describes RIVERSYDE’s attitude toward music well when it says, “here's the moral to the story, we don't do it for the glory, we don't do it for the money, we don't do it for the things.” RIVERSYDE’s purpose as a band is to share their love of music and passion for life with the world, one city at a time. For more information, tour dates, CD’s, photos, or merchandise, please contact Paul Devassy at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.riversyde.com.