Some of Rays earliest memories include being surrounded by music and musicians growing up just outside of Detroit, Michigan. Ray was involved in choir from an early age and learned his initial guitar licks from his older brother, John, who had his own rock'n roll band in the 60's. The Detroit sound was a huge influence at the time and Motown was at it's peak. In high school Ray received formal voice training and soon earned the respect of his peers by winning his division in the Michigan State Solo and Ensemble Festival. Later Ray would travel to England and France to perform solo.  During the 70’s and 80’s Ray also enjoyed modest artistic and commercial success, performing solo on guitar, and playing drums, his "first instrument" for local bands.


Ray looked up to Paul McCartney and Stevie Wonder "because they were complete musicians...they could write great songs, and play several instruments, and sing." By his mid-twenties, Ray was working as a musician full time. He sang, played drums in "The Inversions," one of the hottest dance bands in the Detroit area. He also continued to develop his vocal talent under renowned Broadway vocal coach Ray Taylor.


Ray vividly remembers his introduction to Slack Key guitar when he moved to the islands over a decade ago. He studied under Ozzie Kotani and Raymond Kane and learned the nahe nahe sound. He performed with Kane at the 1994 and 1996 Bank of Hawaii Ki Ho'alu Festivals. He appeared at the Slack Key Festivals on his own accord in 2003, 2004. In 2005 3 island festivals: Maui, O'ahu and the Big Island. He also had the honor of performing with Na Hoku Award winner Kawai Cockett at the Merry Monarch Festival in 1994 with Halau Mohala Ilima.  Another outstanding memory was playing for a standing room only crowd at the American Embassy in Paris, France in May, 2000.


Ray has shared his passion for Hawaiian music with his wife, Sue, (a member of Kumu Ainsley Halemanu’s Halau Ka Liko O Ka Palai).  You'll often find her dancing hula at Ray's performances.  He stays active performing and in various recording projects, and promoting his 2 CDs "Kukuna Mehana", and "Hoomalie."