THE FOUNDERS OF
THE WAKE UP EXPERIENCE
THE WAKE UP STORY
[Wake Up Experience]
: noun. An experience of accessing deep inner wisdom and an elevated state of being, typically resulting in the knowing of unconditional love, peace, oneness and joy.
As our perspective shifts during these moments, we see things more clearly. This clarity tends to blur for most of us until we have another wake up experience. As our WUE’s increase, we become more authentic in our day-to-day lives.
THE STORY OF
Evan Bane and Ryz, met at Susquehanna University through friends who owned a recording studio. Evan Bane recorded rhymes, Ryz co-produced music, and the creative vibes flourished. Along with a few other classmates, they recorded 3 hip hop albums, performed at local venues, and opened for Grammy Award winning hip hop band, The Roots. Upon graduating, Evan Bane moved to Los Angeles to attend film school while Ryz made moves between NYC and Connecticut, writing and producing music.
The two experienced a defining moment when Evan Bane traveled to Connecticut to work in the studio with Ryz. It was the first time they worked 1-on-1 and the creative synergy was powerful. They sensed a higher purpose for their collaboration emerging. Six months later, Ryz was driving across the country to relocate to Los Angeles. Although they knew music would be a key part of their journey, the duo still found themselves soul searching to more fully understand their purpose. They delved deeper into spiritual study, began practicing transcendental meditation, and embraced vegan lifestyles, setting them on a path of awakened expression.
As their growth accelerated, so did the clarity of how this would manifest. Through the power of music, visual arts, and activism, The Wake Up Experience inspires peace, love, unity and justice for ALL humans, animals and the planet.
BROUGHT TOGETHER BY A MUTUAL LOVE FOR MUSIC
was raised by parents who placed a high value on education, the arts, and celebrating the richness of African American heritage. His household was filled with soul, jazz
and gospel melodies, a vast collection of
Black literature and art, and stories of Civil Rights protest in the tumultuous Jim Crow South.The home’s rich environment filled young Evan Bane with a great sense of pride. Fully engaged in school, athletics, and community activities, he was exposed to cultural museums, art classes, plays, and poetry readings, all stimulating his imagination and drawing him toward the power of artistic expression. But it was the moment he first played a bootleg cassette with the words, “Run-DMC” penned in bold red ink, that his lifelong journey with Hip Hopbegan.
It was the fresh sound, fierce energy, and bold style that kept rap beats blasting from his bedroom. It was the outspoken storytelling and lyricism of emcees like Rakim, KRS-One, Ice Cube, Nasty Nas, and A Tribe Called Quest that broadened his understanding of what spoken word is able to build. It was Yo! MTV Raps and BET’s Rap City that kept him glued to every episode. Fully engulfed by hip hop culture, a young Evan Bane started writing rhymes throughout middle and high school, finally getting to record his raps in college.
As a Broadcast Communication major at Susquehanna University in Pennsylvania, his exposure to radio, film, tv, and music production, solidified his desire to work in media. Graduating Magna Cum Laude, he set his sights on Hollywood after acceptance to the famed University of Southern California Film School. Surrounded by the creative process in the entertainment capital of the world, Evan Bane’s storytelling artistry blossomed.
He earned an MFA in filmmaking and was accepted into the Film Critical Studies PhD program, where he was mentored by the renowned Dr. Todd “Notorious PhD” Boyd. Boyd schooled him in the study of Race & Popular Culture, and the art of effectively communicating one’s critical perspective. Completing his doctoral dissertation, “The Cultural War Against Black Intellectualism: Fighting For & Dying Over Knowledge, Dope & Hip-Hop Culture in Pursuit of Black Liberation,” served as the rigorous process through which Evan Bane’s desire to create a program combining visual art, scholarship, and hip hop materialized.
Evan Bane’s journey took an inspired turn when he read Eckhart Tolle’s, The Power of Now: A Guide to Spiritual Enlightenment. The transformative essence, magnitude, and urgency of the message stirred something deep within him, motivating his exploration into conscious living. As he sought spiritual study, began practicing Transcendental Meditation, and embraced an intermittent fasting vegan lifestyle, significant personal development unfolded. The limitless nature of elevated consciousness inspired him to combine soul-centered living with creative expression, leading to the co-founding of The Wake Up Experience with his good friend and soul brother, Ryz.
innately danced and banged on pots and pans, which naturally led to a Muppet Babies drum kit. Love and rhythm weren’t the only things moving young Ryz, however. He also enjoyed singing. His mother often broke out a microphone and cassette deck to record his sister and him performing smash hits such as “Itsy Bitsy Spider” and “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star.” From day one, music, love and joy were one in the same for young Ryz.
As a kid, he would daydream about a world filled with love while hypnotized by the sounds of Jazz+Hip Hop, courtesy of the orchestra in his mind. Melodies, harmonies, rhythms and rhymes constantly filled his soul. At age 8 his parents divorced, which gave music an additional role in his life. It became a way for Ryz to express and cope with pain. This was the first time he became aware of music as a healer. He started putting rhymes down on paper and formed his first group in fifth grade where he and some friends rapped and danced. He also studied the saxophone and once middle school came around he was playing the drums in jazz band. As music&love continued to express through Ryz, he was voted class friendliest by his peers; an acknowledgement he is still grateful for to this day.
By high school his focus became singing, leading to international choir tours and performances at historic sites such as Westminster Abbey and the Sistine Chapel. Inspired to take his songwriting to the next level, Ryz then picked up the guitar and piano alongside recording two albums with his high school band. His intention to make a career out of music lead him to study voice and music theory at Susquehanna University, earn a degree in Recording Arts from Full Sail University, and gain experience working at recording studios in NYC and Connecticut. Ryz then built his own studio and began producing music 24/7. Since then, he’s been working as a singer, songwriter, DJ and producer.
With music as his companion, Ryz has deepened his understanding of love through self-reflection, life lessons, and being a shoulder for others to lean on. His path eventually lead him to the practice of Transcendental Meditation, developed by Maharishi Mahesh Yogi (famed guru to the Beatles). Not long after discovering meditation, he enrolled at the University of Santa Monica where he obtained certification in Advanced Spiritual Psychology, acquiring 480 hours of practice in facilitating self-discovery. Another significant part of his transformation has included adopting an intermittent fasting vegan lifestyle along with releasing 85 lbs. and counting.
It’s no surprise that Ryz is still giving free hugs and making beats. They remain foundational in his being, as he uses his story, music, life’s challenges and victories, to empower,
uplift & inspire. Since his Susquehanna days, Ryz knew his journey included good friend and soul brother, Evan Bane. This brotherhood and shared purpose of raising the vibration of love on the planet has emerged as The Wake Up Experience.
has been giving free hugs and making beats
since he was in diapers. As a baby he