I’ve been all over the rocky mountains
Splashed in England’s hyde park fountains
Seen denali rising up at three A.M.
Watched the wind blow through the red wood forest
Heard the tabernacle chorus
singing songs like angels do in heaven
but all I need is you, here, falling in my arms
and me, there, subject to your charms
and I don’t know if I have ever felt this way before
all I need is you
- Ryan Shupe & the Rubberband, All I Need
I have talked about music before, how it has to get inside me and resonate with my soul for me to like it. Very rarely do I accept a musician or band in its entirety. I pick and choose what I like across the genres with no regard for popularity or public opinion and no loyalty to any particular artist or group. One of the rare exceptions to this is Ryan Shupe & the Rubberband. This is one of the few groups whose music I enjoy in its entirety, that I have a collection of more than one or two of their songs. I don't know if it is just good music or if it is becaues I can say I knew Ryan way back when. We attended the same commuter school and were part of the same student ward on campus. His band even played for a ward social. But It wasn't until quite a few years later that I became a fan.
Ryan originally intended for his band to be hired out on a gig-by-gig basis, which is why he called it The Rubberband. The name he chose reflected the flexibility he wanted in his band. His plan was to avoid a messy band break-up and just hire other musicians to play with him on a contract basis. But as time passed, he eventually took on a regular crew of band members, forming a sort of brotherhood between them. Their original bass player (whose name I forget -- so sorry) left the band seven or eight years ago and their drummer recently moved on to new adventures as well. Still, their group continues to produce their own brand of spectacular music, which doesn't quite fit into any one genre.
I've been to see them play several times. Their music is awesome on its own. But to see them play live is an experience you'll never forget. You never know what you'll get. They play each others instruments while still holding their own. They completely switch instruments. They switch songs mid-way through and then switch back again. They tell jokes. They improvise. They are seriously skilled musicians. This video, from their YouTube channel, shows an impromptu duel between band leader, Ryan Shupe, on the mandolin and bass player, Ryan Tilby.
If you're interested in seeing them play, check out their tour schedule.
Here are a few of their songs on my favorites list. I've linked them to the RSRB Facebook page, where you can listen to them in their entirety (I hope -- I did this while logged out, so I think it is accessible to non-Facebookers). You can also see their complete album list here.
All I Need
Banjo Boy (Capitol Records music video on YouTube)
Rain Falls Down
Oh How I Miss You
Hey Hey Hey
Would You Love Me
Be The One
The Devil Went Down to Georgia
. . . and in a category all its own . . .