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Biography

GPS is a that evolved from the John Payne-centric pre Phoenix line-up of Asia, adopting the name GPS in 2006.

John Payne, Guthrie Govan, Jay Schellen and Ryo Okumoto. All four men have left their mark indelibly stamped on the music world. John Payne joined venerable rock legends ASIA back in 1991 after John Wetton’s final departure. Over the next 15 years, John would lead Asia through some of their most critically and fan acclaimed works. All this culminated with the highly successful “Silent Nation” album in 2004 and the subsequent world tour. “Silent Nation” was the most successful Asia release since the bands heady career highs of the early 1980s.

Guthrie Govan has been a prodigy on the strings since he was a small boy. He is one of the most respected musicians in guitar circles today. He joined Asia in 2001 during the recording sessions for their “Aura” album. His distinctive style has left his signature on the tracks from Asia’s “Aura” and “Silent Nation” releases. Guthrie’s string wizardry has thrilled fans across the world as he lent his talents to Asia classics old and new to hungry audiences everywhere.

Jay Schellen first burst onto the scene in the early 80s, lending his considerable talents to such notable bands as Hurricane, Bad Finger and most recently Asia. He also was a major part of the “Conspiracy” project head up by Chris Squire (Yes) and Billy Sherwood (Yes). Jay has also lent his skills to a formidable list of projects that have shown his incredible diversity and adaptability in the drumming field. John Payne first met Jay during the writing sessions for Asia’s “Silent Nation” album. From the first demos, it was clear that Jay was a force to be reckoned with. And in 2005 when the Asia drum throne became vacant, John’s first call was to Jay. His dynamic playing took the second half of the Asia world tour and elevated it to the next level.

Ryo Okumoto’s resume reads like a who’s who of the music world. Besides his ever present role as keyboardist in prog rock favorites, Spock’s Beard, Ryo has lent his considerable talents to many recording and live projects. Rock legends like Phil Collins, Eric Clapton, Robbie Robertson, Aretha Franklin, Smokey Robinson and many, many more have called on Ryo’s magic fingers. His distinctive style was a welcome addition to the GPS sound.

With all the pieces in place, these four power houses of musical talent joined forces under the banner GPS. With the music firmly rooted in the prog sensibilities that defined many of their individual projects, GPS has taken all of their contributions and raised the bar. From the invigorating guitar solos contributed by Guthrie to the rock steady beats brought to bear by Jay, the music marks a new era for all of these talented musicians. John Payne’s vocals have never sounded better and Ryo’s keyboards somehow tie the whole thing into the potent musical brew that is GPS. Welcome to the future.

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