Adding female vocalist Schell Robertson and bassist Tom Jeffers, the band known as Ray Street Park went on to release their self-titled debut in 1999, which sold more than 1,500 copies. Performing steadily as both an original band and a four set a night cover outfit, the band had grown leaps and bounds by the end of 2001, when they decided to part ways with Schell and pursue a more balls-out, powerful sound that had thus far eluded them.
Emerging from Pete Bankert's infamous Rock City Studios in the winter of 2002 with their sophomore release "Lubricated", Ray Street Park had finally become the mature, emotion-laden, power-packed ball of thunder that the three founding members had envisioned six years before. Backed by sales of over 2,000 copies of "Lubricated", the band had to yet undergo one more major change, and the addition of bassist Terry Alan Martin, formerly of the well-known Detroit band Vinyl, has today cemented the outfit as a true force to be reckoned with when you talk about hard music in the Motor City.
Now sporting a 2004 Detroit Music Award Nomination for "Outstanding Live Performance" and 2005 nominations in the "Outstanding Live Performance" and "Outstanding Hard Rock/Metal Band" categories, RSP is charging forward into the future led by vocalist Rick Stafford and his masterful stage presence and powerful throat. He is the frontman's frontman, and leads a Ray Street Park audience with the same panache that only a young David Lee Roth once possessed.
Guitarist Jeff Howey is a diverse and schooled player with a flair for grinding crunch and an incredible command of his sound. On guitar, Jeff can do it all, and as the heart of the RSP sound, he truly gets a chance to.
Veteran Detroit scenester Terry Alan Martin is a rare and unique bassist, borrowing at equal times from Steve Harris (Iron Maiden) and Flea (RHCP) and creating a unique tone that's all his own. His fit with the band is exceptional and he is right at home in the clay just above the bedrock of planet RSP.
That bedrock is drummer Darrell "Rockquake" Robertson, a man possessed by the need to punish drum heads and pummel senses with his rhythmic assault. Robertson is an extraordinarily powerful player with an uncanny knack for nuance. He is foundationally strong and, with stunning ease, lays down the deep groove that RSP has become known for.
Confident, mature and ready to take the next step, RSP is now recording in anticipation of a new 2006 release and will, as always, be putting on their usual all-out live assault on stages throughout Michigan and the Midwest. Look for the RSP live show to be one of power, conviction, energy and your basic unbridled sonic assault on the senses.
Adjectives and hip slang aside, WRIF 101.1 (Detroit) fm personality Doug Podell sums it up best when he says, "These guys are setting the standard for what Detroit rock is all about."
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7. Can't U See