"Talented dude, interesting music…!" tweeted then-Guns N' Roses guitarist Ron "Bumblefoot" Thal, upon hearing self-titled debut album of RAUSCH. Little did he know the road traveled to get just that far... 

Doug RAUSCH Ron Bumblefoot Thal

w/ Ron Bumblefoot Thal

After devoting the better part of his early years to the piano, namesake frontman Doug Rausch earned his Ithaca College music degree - winning recognition as concerto competition finalist with Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue - & plunged straight into self-imposed exile. Disillusioned by how mainstream music had all but completely plateaued by the early 2000’s – culminating in an eye-opening stint at Sony Music Studios - he found himself in a decade-long campaign chasing a long-held musical vision of his own.  

RAUSCH caught his first compositional accolades when Jordan Rudess, keyboard wizard of Dream Theater, contacted him to perform in the very first KEYFEST; the invitation stemmed from a college demo that made its way into Jordan’s hands. There, RAUSCH unveiled the 11-minute FLOW - only to reveal he was saving that for “Album #3.” Meanwhile, he was hard at work in an attempt to craft the proper debut.  

Doug RAUSCH Jordan Rudess

w/ Jordan Rudess

Doug RAUSCH Gary Wehrkamp

w/ Gary Wehrkamp

RAUSCH Album Cover Art

RAUSCH Debut Album Artwork

All these efforts attracted a kindred musical spirit in virtuoso guitarist Gary Wehrkamp, best known for his work with progressive rock titans Shadow Gallery. As Wehrkamp’s invaluable musicianship helped put a cohesive stamp on the tracks – and mix-extraordinaire Rich Mouser (Neal Morse, Spock’s Beard, Dream Theater) agreed to help deliver the baby - RAUSCH had everything in place to complete the long-awaited self-titled debut album (RAUSCH), released in late 2009. Leadoff single "No Fair" hit the top 10 on New Music Weekly’s small-market radio charts, & the haunting "Ode to Pain" earned an honorable-mention nod from the 2010 International Songwriting Competition (ISC). Grammy-nominated producer David Ivory (The Roots, Halestorm) "discovered" the band, opening yet another door…  

Applauding the ambition, Ivory’s assertion that "‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ wasn’t until Queen’s fourth album" was as much a caution as it was a compliment. Via subsequent collaboration with Ivory, RAUSCH gained a hard-fought rite of passage, learning to flex a “commercial” muscle that would prove not mutually exclusive from the artistic one. In pursuit of uniting the best of both worlds, Doug briefly stepped away from the piano completely; first Ivory-produced track "Good Day" instead came through his guitar. To hold fans over, it was released as a standalone single in 2014 (with accompanying video directed by musical contemporaries in NYC's Jolly), and with that the band bought some much-needed time to put the finishing touches on some stubborn 10-minute “epics” that would ultimately round out the next full album. 

RAUSCH Good Day Cover Art

"GOOD DAY" Single

Doug RAUSCH Piano Live