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Melbourne guitarist James Ryan and singer Jimmy Cupples formed King Canyon in March, just as the world began to shut down. Ironically, the project would never have existed if not for the crazy events of this year. With minimal discussion or prompting, the pair trialed a collaboration via email and text. King Canyon was born!

Jason Rosewarne caught up with James and Jimmy at Blue Pyrenees Estate, Avoca recently before their livestream gig that night with The Badloves.

King Canyon’s sound is influenced by, and at times reminiscent of the great rock bands of the 70s such as legendary pioneers Free and Led Zeppelin.

So how did James and Jimmy connect and what was the motivating force to create their new project King Canyon? – Ryan explains; “When the worldwide quarantine kicked in and the live scene came to sudden halt, I decided to use the time to finally pursue a band project I had wanted to do for so long”. James’ was on the lookout for a vocalist that would complete the sound he had in his head.

Enter Jimmy Cupples; “When Jimmy’s name came up, I thought he could be perfect. We decided to collaborate on a new song idea  to see what would happen. After a few emails and voice messages, the sparks began to fly and the track “Yellow Fever” was born, which became an immediate favourite. “I guess this is what you call chemistry!”

James Ryan is a well-respected and sought after guitarist, having toured internationally with Men At Work in their heyday, and has since been performing with industry heavyweights Russell Morris, Ross Wilson, Jon Stevens, Kate Ceberano, and Tina Arena. His YouTube channel ilovenoise has over 15k subscribers and more than 6 million views.

Jimmy Cupples is known for his huge vocal chops and energetic stage presence. One of his original songs “Sunset Hills” was featured in the Australian movie Rise. He has been an active part of the Melbourne music scene most of his life, having learnt his craft from watching his famous uncle Peter Cupples, who was the voice and driving force behind popular 70’s Australian blue-eyed soul band Stylus.

“One of the things we are enjoying the most is how easy the process has been and how much fun we are having. In King Canyon we are able to embrace our influences and instinctively go with the sounds that we love without it being questioned.”

The pair are working towards an album, but also releasing new tracks every month. “Every new release is a chance to reach more people and grow our audience.”

Check out King Canyon’s music on Spotify


Mon 30 Nov
King Canyon acoustic – Jimmy and James
The Arcobar,
8 Arco Lane, Heatherton, VIC
Tix on sale now – book by calling the venue direct on 9551 1424

Mon 21 Dec
King Canyon acoustic – Jimmy and James
The Arcobar,
8 Arco Lane, Heatherton, VIC
Tix on sale now – book by calling the venue direct on 9551 1424

Fri 22 Jan
King Canyon – Full band
The Fyrefly
Basement, 34 Inkerman Street, St Kilda, VIC, 3182
Tix on sale soon.

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