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Country Rock Austin, Texas; 1994- In the late 1980s, a young music major (from North Texas State) and singer/songwriter named Andy Van Dyke arrived in Austin, Texas. He played local folk venues as a solo then formed the Andy Van Dyke Band which became the hard rock band, Drop the Gun. Eventually, Van Dyke and Drop the Gun's guitarist David Ducharme-Jones decided they wanted to do more acoustic based music. They performed as a duo for a time before expanding into the Rainravens in 1994 when they landed Dave Evertson on bass and veteran drummer Herb Belofsky (Gary P. Nunn, Ray Wylie Hubbard, Chris Wall). Tapping into the country rock line running from the Byrds and Burritos through the early Jayhawks, the Rainravens built a framework of mostly acoustic (sometimes electric) folk, country, rock, and pop with tight harmonies around Van Dyke's catchy originals and dynamic lead vocals. Flavored with dobro, fiddle, and pedal steel, their 1995 self-titled debut on Dejadisc was well-received by local, national, and European reviewers. After extensive touring in the States, in 1996, the Rainravens sent a demo tape off to the new German alt. country/Americana label Blue Rose which was fast becoming a haven for numerous U.S. performers old and new. They were impressed enough to give them a contract which led to Diamond Blur (1997) and Rose of Jericho (1999) which stick close to the formula that made Rainravens so annealing. --David Goodman, author of Modern Twang: An Alternative Country Music Guide and Directory
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