Text Box: Bio

His choice of instrument at six years of age was the Trombone.  After watching “The Music Man” on the television in 1962, Eric Ray knew that he had made the right choice.   This led to another six years of a continuous quest to occupy and remain in the first chair.      While 
participating in many orchestral and jazz festivals, the first place medals became a staircase to a brass finale at the California State Honor Band in 1968.     Eric continued his quest for music perfection in music theory and composition until he graduated from California State University at Long Beach in 1972.

The Vietnam War, the pursuit of a career, and the challenges of raising children would soon put Eric’s desire of performing music to rest.  Rest it did until Eric married a Cherokee woman named Ja’nice in 1989.  No longer would the Cherokee blood running through Eric’s veins remain submissively asleep.   As this new arising became stronger by the day, Eric soon found himself in meditation and ceremony while listening to the songs of R. Carlos Naki, Coyote Old Man, and other Native American musical artists.  He soon carved out a Native American flute from a bamboo stalk and began composing and playing his first songs.  Although his first flute was soft sounding and definitely out of any conventional tuning, the inspiration continued and the first recording of Dusk to Dawn was made at Weston House Recording in Orangevale May 20, 1996 at 2 o’clock in the morning with two of his children; Joshua Ray on guitar and Weston Ray on drums.   

Eric continued to compose and play Native American Flute songs for the next fourteen years.  Performances were limited to family and occasionally as a guest performer at music recitals.  There were many requests for Eric to produce recordings of his music.  However, Eric never considered himself seasoned enough to warrant a serious recording.  After attending the 2007 Zion Art and Flute Festival in Springdale, Utah, it was clear to Eric that it was time to share his music – the music of Gvwi.  The first album “Dusk to Dawn” was soon underway at Weston House Recording now located in the commercial area of Sacramento.  This album as well as a second album, “Valley of Thunder” is available below.  

Gvwi Music  is composed from the heart; and while influenced  by   R. Carlos Nakai,   Coyote Old Man,  Arvel Bird,  Jon Johnson,  and   Eric’s Grandfather;  it is a mixture of  Traditional Native American, Celtic, Old Time, and Alternative Rock.  This unique style is Gvwi.  Eric’s hope is that you will find at least one song to identify with and will enjoy this music as much as he has enjoyed creating it for you.



Eric Ray and David Caldon

2007 West Coast Pow Wow Cruise

Allie “Gator” Ray

This talented young star plays back up Mother Drum at performances and will be featured on the next album currently in production.  As well as singing, she also plays the Native American Flute, the Japanese Taiko Drum, the Japanese Flute, the modern flute, and the piano.  She is an enrolled member of the Cherokee Nation.


Currently, Allie is pursuing a Fashion Design / Costuming Degree at Palomar College, San Marcos, CA.  Her desire is to work on movie sets and Broadway Productions.

Eric Ray (Gvwi) and Arvel Bird

2006 West Coast Pow Wow Cruise





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Arvel Bird

Enter Site Here

While performing at the 2008 Indigenous People’s Days in Nevada City, I came across a drum maker named David Ferrier who was selling these amazing drums.  Later that day, I introduced my Recording Engineer and Percussionist, Weston Ray, to David and his drums.  After playing several of the drums, Weston settled into one that he preferred.  It is now a part of Gvwi Music for performances and recordings.

Eric Ray and David Ferrier in Nevada City, CA.



While David and I exchanged drum for money, David bought a “Dusk to Dawn” CD from me for $10 and sold it to a guest at the table next to us for $20. Hmmm—Imagine that.

Eric Ray


Text Box: Ja’nice Ray