published Thursday, August 21st, 2014

Decibella — How Bexy Ribeiro got her groove back - Aug 22

Decibella is Tyler Southern, Tyler Reddick, Bexy Ribeiro, Jared White and Jon Elliott, from left.
Decibella is Tyler Southern, Tyler Reddick, Bexy Ribeiro, Jared White and Jon Elliott, from left.
Mark A Herndon LVS

* What: Decibella with Pack of Wolves (after Nightfall show).

* When: 9:30 p.m. Friday, Aug. 22.

* Where: Rhythm & Brews, 221 Market St.

* Admission: $7.

* Phone: 423-267-4644.

* Website:;

Earlier this year, Bexy Ribeiro decided enough was enough.

In April, the 2012 Entertainer of the Year at the Chattanooga Music Awards felt like she was spinning her creative wheels when her electronic/soul trio Digital Butter split up after a run of about five years.

A pervasive presence on the Chattanooga music scene, Ribeiro still had plenty on her plate, including spots on the lineups for The Malemen Show Band, The Power Players and The Communicators. In losing Digital Butter, however, she also lost her sole outlet for performing her own material. Even with most of her nights and weekends spoken for — on top of maintaining a full-time job — she needed to fill that void.

So she started head-hunting.

“I reached out to people and started assembling a group, a supergroup,” she says, laughing. “I wanted to make sure they were not rookies, people who had been around and knew what was up.”

By the time the dust cleared around the newly solidified lineup for the new project, Decibella, Ribeiro had assembled what she calls “an elite group” of scene veterans, including Soul Mechanic’s bassist and saxophonist, Tyler Reddick and Jon Elliott, Remembering January guitarist Tyler Southern and Knoxville-based gospel drummer Jared White.

Decibella debuted on the music scene in March as a contender in the semifinal round of Road to Nightfall battle of the bands. They lost — by seven votes — to the contest’s ultimate victors, Function, but it served its intended purpose “to make a statement,” she says.

Since then, they’ve played Riverbend, released the five-track EP “In Denial” and been on heavy rotation at local clubs around town. On Friday, Aug. 22, they’ll open for this week’s Nightfall headliner, Johnnyswim, before heading down Market Street for a second show at Rhythm & Brews.

Despite the many other projects she’s been involved in since joining Chattanooga’s music scene as a member of Milele Roots in 2006, Ribeiro says Decibella represents her first opportunity to play her own music in front of live instrumentation instead of a digital backing track. That’s been an invigorating change of pace, she says.

And that creative void she was so irked by? Filled to overflowing, Ribeiro says.

“One hundred percent and more,” she says. “[The songs] are all growing and flourishing. It’s more than I ever thought I would get out of something like this. It’s been a great experience.”

Contact Casey Phillips at cphillips@timesfree or 423-757-6205. Follow him on Twitter at @PhilllipsCTFP.

about Casey Phillips...

Casey Phillips has worked as a features reporter in the Life department since May 2007. He writes about entertainment, consumer technology, animals and news of the weird. Casey hails from Knoxville and earned a bachelor of science degree in journalism and a bachelor of arts in German from Middle Tennessee State University, where he worked as the features editor for the student newspaper, Sidelines. Casey's writing has earned numerous accolades, including first and second place ...

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