Rogue Wave is an indie rock band from Oakland, California, and headed by Zach Schwartz (a.k.a. Zach Rogue) who created the band after losing his job in the dot-com bust. Their first album was Out of the Shadow which was released privately in 2003 and re-released in 2004. In the fall of 2004 they went on a national tour of the United States. Their second album Descended Like Vultures was released in October 2005. The band’s third album, Asleep at Heaven’s Gate was released on September 18, 2007, though it was available one week earlier on iTunes. Permalight, Rogue Wave’s fourth full-length album, was released March 2, 2010 through Brushfire Records. Their most recent album, Nightingale Floors was released June 4, 2013 through Vagrant Records.
In early 2002, Zach Rogue decided to take some time off from his home base of San Francisco and set off with a one-way ticket to New York in March with the intention of recording one or two songs with friend Bill Racine. He came away with an album’s worth of material that would later become Rogue Wave’s debut, Out of the Shadow. After returning to the Bay Area with a nearly completed record in hand, Zach decided to leave his former band, the Bay Area based Desoto Reds, in which he played guitar, and form his own group. At the end of 2002, while preparing the album for release, Zach rounded out the band’s lineup with the addition of Patrick Spurgeon (drums, keys, samples, vocals) Sonya Westcott (bass, vocals), and Gram LeBron (guitar, keys, vocals).
Patrick Spurgeon has played with bands Churches, Pancho San, Somehow at Sea, Antenna, Stranded at the Drive In, Ramona the Pest, Brando, Steve Kowalski, Lessick, and has also released solo work as The Phantom Drummer.
Gram LeBron has been involved in the bands Com Jr, Get Better, The Album Leaf, Port O’brien, Long and Golden, schrasj, Sad Like Crazy, Conundrum, Jessica Six, All Transistor and has also released solo work as Golden Gram. He currently plays with Elskling and Outer Embassy and composes for film and commercials.
Sonya Westcott was in the band Venus Bleeding before her time with Rogue Wave.
Evan Farrell played with The Japonize Elephants, Mega Mousse, Amaldecor, Big Mule, Hunted Haunted Bazergahn Klezmorchestra, Grande Rouge, Kentucky Nightmare, Mama HooHoo.
Patrick Abernethy was formerly a keyboard player with Beulah before joining Rogue Wave.
Departure and death of Evan Farrell
Evan Farrell left Rogue Wave after the recording of Asleep at Heaven’s Gate to pursue his other project, The Japonize Elephants, but remained a friend of the band. Farrell died soon after on December 23, 2007 in Oakland CA, suffering from “massive smoke inhalation” in an apartment fire caused by a dangerously obsolete gas-fired floor furnace. Farrell himself had replaced original bassist Sonya Westcott in 2004. Patrick Abernethy joined the band in 2007 to take Farrell’s place on bass and was later replaced by Cameron Jasper in 2009.