The Universe Featuring Ray is Ray Syd Stern. A wild hippie child crossed with a theatrical powerhouse performer, inspired by her weird and wonderful predecessors like David Bowie, Alice Cooper and Rocky Horror Picture Show. With polarizing on stage attitudes and vocal styles ranging from Karen O and Nina Hägen to ________ and the whole spectrum in between.
Music career began at 16 in the tiny town of Blenheim, Ontario when Ray began playing acoustic and writing her own songs. She then partnered up with a high school friend, creating ‘The Peace Leeches’, an indie electronic dance duo, who gained small scale fame as they went on to open up for Finger 11, The Trews, Thornley, Sloan, Ill Scarlett, The Arkells and Holy Fuck as well as receiving a nomination for the T.O Indie Music Awards in 2010.
Ray was always unique since her early days of body paint and handmade costumes, pipe cleaners in her dreads, fake painted eyeballs, experimental music and lyrics of The Peace Leeches. She blazed a trail, and together, The Peace Leeches had something special, an energy unlike most. Now with her current operation in London, Ontario Ray’s new solo project, The Universe Featuring Ray, has that same energy, with or without the bells and whistles, it’s stripped down, raw and real, and thus, it makes you feel.
Without borders, without walls, Ray’s soul shines through her dynamic and uber creative music, carrying her positive lyrical undertones and wild child stage antics along with her. Ray still gets stopped in public and told that her music shaped some peoples lives, people have thanked her and used her lyrics as words to live by, an example given was the words in Donate, “I heard you saw a man the other day, you looked at him in a better way, didn’t put him down, So sit yourself back down and put him on! You can become anyone you choose, just put yourself in everybody’s shoes and sit yourself back down”.
Ray prides herself on her lyrical content, from frivolous and funny to serious and powerful like life itself.
Ray is backed by lots of loving fans, family and a crew of supportive friends who never stop giving and sharing in the love and creation of this project. The way any human accomplishes something great is through the love, support, sharing, co-creation and collaboration of many people and Ray is surrounded by just that. The Universe Featuring Ray is a project designed to be inclusive because The Universe features everyone and we are all co-creating this experience together, this project wouldn’t exist without the ears to hear it or eyes to see it so it depends on you to experience it for it to even exist! Therefore Ray openly invites anyone to give input on her art, share ideas about the music or create your own Universe and see what happens!!
This project has so much potential to grow into something beyond music as it encompasses the whole Universe and since you are part of it, you are part of this! Please open your heart and mind and tune into the frequencies that The Universe is channelling through Ray… and really listen.