The Fray

Isaac Slade and Joe King were pupils at the  Faith Christian Academy, Denver.  Three years after school a happy meeting at a local record shop resulted in them arranging to meet up to discuss and play music.  One thing led to another, and soon they’d put together a band.  They persuaded Ben Wysocki (drums) and Dave Welsh (guitar) to join them.

The boys all had a common interested: piano, and this perhaps explains why their unique brand of piano rock works so well.  Isaac Slade and Joe King both discovered an early passion for music playing the piano.  King even competed in several piano competitions before dropping it in favor of the guitar, considered amongst his peer group to be a ‘way cooler instrument’. Wysocki and Welsh had also played piano at a young age, but after enduring being sent to piano lessons for a few years, swapped to the drums and guitar respectively.

All four grew up in strongly religious families, and have strong spiritual values. Thanks to their church connections, the group got their first taste of playing gigs at local Church halls.  To begin with, Isaac’s song lyrics were Christian based.  Then one day, when working at Starbucks, he had the sudden realisation that he could sing about the wider world within the contect of his faith.   Armed with a set of new worldly-wise songs, the band started playing local club venues.  Isaac’s brother, Caleb, joined the group to play bass guitar. However sibling tensions obviously ran high, and soon he left citing ‘musical differences’.  Later on Isaac was to say that Caleb’s leaving was his inspiration behind the words for ‘Over My Head’ (a song first titled ‘Cable Car’). 

The band’s name, The Fray, came about after a intelligent decision-making process after a gig at Caleb’s high school graduation dance.  The audience were asked for possible names for the band – several were volunteered, written on a piece of paper, and put in a bowl.  The band members removed all the slips of paper apart from one, which remained at the bottom of the bowl.  On the last slip of paper was written ‘The Fray’.  The name stuck – the boys liked it because that’s the way songwriting often felt!

Two EPs were the first releases from the band. ‘Movement’, which sold well after gigs, then ‘Reason’ which was more successful, with the song Cable Car getting a lot of radio time of the local station KTCL.  A talent scout from Epic Records spotted the potential in the band, and in 2004 the boys signed to the record label.

The group’s first album How to Save a Life came out in September 2005.  Soon after the band embarked on a nationwide tour, supporting Weezer.  Two tracks from the album made it big, Over My Head  and How to Save a Live (which featured on the soundtrack for Grey’s Anatomy). 

January 2009 saw the release of The Fray’s second album,  self-titled The Fray.  The first single to be released from the album, You Found Me went on to phenomenal chart success.

Best Band’s (from 100BestEverything) ratings for The Fray: Music 4 stars out of 5. Character 4 stars out of 5. Live Performance 3 out of 5.

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