||Stop Saying I CD (2011) |
"Ryan Monahan opens his mouth to sing, but it's the jaws of the audience members that drop," says Flagpole since his short residency in Athens, GA...
Monahan is an Athens-based artist collective formed by New Haven, CT-born musician Ryan Monahan. The debut album, Stop Saying I, was released in 2011 under independent label Revolving Doors, featuring a range of talent from NYC's IDM artist Insik Sate, members of Athens' own Dark Meat, Venice Is Sinking, and MISFORTUNE500. The sound combines elements of indie, folk, ambience, dark jazz, and world music to create a synthesis of organic pop-rock.
Connecticut-born artist Ryan Monahan spent several years as the frontman for CT-based college-rock groups Eschellon, and later Shadowgraphs; the former group combining elements of jam/blues with indie rock, with the latter focusing on atmospherics, and dynamic post-rock song structures within an indie-pop framework. Both groups garnered modest amounts of press, and college radio-play, and both would eventually earn film and television licenses including the Weinstein Film, Crossing Over, the Lifetime Network's Army Wives, and Fox Network's Lie To Me.
After earning a degree in Music, where he immersed himself equally in classical and jazz, Monahan spent years living as a quasi-itinerant - balancing several low paying jobs, living with friends, traveling throughout Iceland and India, absorbing ancient religious texts, and journaling his experiences. It was during his trip to Iceland that Monahan would meet a blind world-traveler by the name of Tony Giles that would solidify his commitment to continue his work as a musician.
Shortly after settling in Athens, Monahan formed the group that would eventually be named Monahan along with longtime friend and musician Josh McMichael (Great Society). The two would also continue to form an early-era Beatles tribute band under the name Beatles For Sale. The formation of the group led to an unexpected relationship with Cindy Wilson of the B-52s, which spawned a new project under the name, Ola Moon. The band's first public appearance was a sold-out show for R.E.M.'s 30th birthday party at the Melting Point in Athens, GA under the name Cindy Wilson, Dana Downs (VieTNam), & The Debauchelors.
During his first two years in Athens, Monahan spent time in between working on music as a freelance music writer for Flagpole Magazine. As a producer and session player, he has worked with Brooklyn-based artist Natalie Riccio, as well as Athens artist Cassette88, later adding Eric Friar of DARC for additional mixing and production work.
Aside from musical aspirations, Monahan began a steady yoga practice at Rubber Soul in Athens starting in 2008, and was certified as a yoga instructor in 2010 under the direction of Dr. Cal Clements. He also organized the Invisible Children Film Festival at Athens' Cine to help raise awareness about child soldiering in Northern Uganda.