Red Light Management

Bio

Just when you think you have The Ivy all figured out as a dreamy synth-pop band, they’ll throw a curve ball at you, incorporating lo-fi bedroom sounds, rock guitars or R&B-inspired instrumental interludes into their indie pop. The Tulsa, Oklahoma-based duo comprising singer/songwriter/guitarist Wyatt Clem and songwriter/synth player/bassist Shawn Abhari always keeps you guessing.

Dubbed by Earmilk as “one of the most promising indie pop acts to come out of Oklahoma” in 2022, The Ivy burst onto the scene in 2017 when their songs “Gold” and “Have You Ever Been in Love” went viral, climbing the Spotify charts and receiving millions of streams, winning over critics and drawing comparisons to The 1975.

The Ivy’s 2023 debut full-length album, A Door Still Open, showcases their knack for writing inviting pop hooks that are utterly catchy without being saccharine and their ability to construct enticing melodies within a pop framework. The album touches on themes of self-reflection, personal growth and transcending the limiting beliefs and mindsets we’re often indoctrinated into during our upbringing. It’s also about recognizing the limiting stories we tell ourselves and moving beyond them. 

Wyatt and Shawn met while studying at the Academy of Contemporary Music in Oklahoma City (founded by Flaming Lips’ manager Scott Booker) in 2016 and instantly hit it off, discovering that their musical styles, although different, complemented each other beautifully. “There were some differences in the music we grew up listening to,” Shawn says. “I grew up listening to emo music and pop punk like Green Day and Blink-182 and Wyatt is influenced more by R&B and the blues. He contributes things I’d never think to write. So it balances out really well in our music.”

Case in point: lead single “Good Faith.” With its groovy opening bass line and Wyatt’s dreamy, ethereal vocals, “Good Faith” combines pop, R&B and indie rock elements to great effect. The song’s lyrics encourage us to take a break from the hustle culture that tells us we should constantly be striving. “It’s about realizing there’s value and worth in being present and keeping your attention on what exists right here and now,” Wyatt says. 

“Street Dog” was inspired by a trip the band took to Mexico to work on songs for the album. “There were a bunch of stray dogs running around the town that didn’t belong to anyone but had a role in the city everyone recognized—no one tried to get rid of them—they just did their thing,” Shawn explains. Wyatt adds that it’s analogous to a big dog that comes into town who appears to be everything you wish you were, but you realize it’s not all it’s cracked up to be.

Bursting with energy, “Stop It on a Dime” is about pouring a lot of yourself into something that’s no longer serving you. It features an unexpected and beguiling instrumental interlude that closes out the track and transports you to another world. 

Both Shawn and Wyatt grew up playing music from a very young age. Shawn started out on piano and initially picked up the guitar when he was nine years old. His mother realized he had natural musical talent, so she encouraged him to apply for a scholarship to a music conservatory, which he ended up getting. 

“My parents are both first-generation immigrants,” Shawn says. “My dad is Iranian and emigrated to the U.S. during the Iranian Revolution, and my mom is from France. They encouraged us to express ourselves creatively, but academics always came first. That’s why I initially pursued engineering.” Shawn played in several punk bands with friends growing up in Tulsa and ended up studying engineering and music production before focusing his attentions on songwriting and creating music with The Ivy.

Wyatt grew up in Amber, Oklahoma, a small town about 40 miles southwest of Oklahoma City. “Where I grew up it was all about baseball and sports,” Wyatt says. “You weren’t supposed to express yourself too much. It had to be within the confines of what was perceived as ‘normal.’” 

Wyatt got his first acoustic guitar when he was 12, and thankfully his father—who’d often blast Van Halen, Bon Jovi and old country music in his truck—immediately noticed that Wyatt had an aptitude for guitar and encouraged him to take lessons. Wyatt soon took up the electric guitar and found himself studying the early music of Radiohead, Red Hot Chili Peppers and Coldplay.

“Music provided something spiritual for me—almost like a religious experience,” Wyatt says. “The way the melodies would play off the music—especially listening to Radiohead’s early stuff—was magical. I’d never heard songs like that. I wanted to replicate what I heard and the incredible guitar tones. That led me to becoming interested in production.”

Originally Wyatt didn’t have any intention of being a lead singer, but when he met Shawn, he encouraged Wyatt to sing the songs he’d written. “Initially singing was pretty far outside of my comfort zone,” Wyatt explains. “I’d never played a real show where I was the singer before. But I discovered I liked it and we started to write new stuff together as The Ivy with me on lead vocals, and it just worked.”

And the rest, as they say, is history. With three critically acclaimed EPs and an ambitious full-length album under their belts, The Ivy have amassed fans all around the world, shared the stage with the likes of LANY and the Band Camino, performed at Lollapalooza and are making indelible waves in the indie pop scene.  

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Tour Dates

Aug 10 2024
Tulips FTW
Fort Worth, TX

News

02/23/2024

THE IVY RELEASES DEBUT ALBUM A DOOR STILL OPEN

THE IVY RELEASES DEBUT ALBUM A DOOR STILL OPEN PRESS HERE to Listen Focus Track "Stop On A Dime" PRESS HERE to Listen (more…)

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01/30/2024

The Ivy Releases New Single and Music Video “Gums Lost Flavor”

“Riveting Retro Hits With Deep Oklahoma Ties” – Ones to Watch “drift away to a fantasy world for a few minutes of escape” – Broadway World “one of the most…

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09/15/2023

The Ivy Releases New Single “Good Faith”

The Ivy Releases New Single “Good Faith” Touring the U.S. this Fall PRESS HERE For Tickets “Riveting Retro Hits With Deep Oklahoma Ties” – Ones to Watch  New York, New York…

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