Tuesday, September 29, 2009

"Lonely in this Crowd"

Adam Ryan...singer, songwriter, dreamer complicated, inspired, focused, small town boy. Guided with passion and a love affair for good music, Adam Ryan is out to prove to the world that not all the good songs have already been written. Adam was raised in a small town in the middle of nowhere Tennessee where Hog-eye runs blood deep, folks drive tractors on the highway, neighbors actually know each other, and family values are still taught by parents. Adam's songs are proof of raw existence told with beauty. Even in the darkest of his songs you hear an under toning hope that breathes life into an untold story. The songs are polished, sustaining and undoubtedly smart. 'Lonely in this Crowd' is undeniably a romance of words told with a heated passion and true complexity of the process of life. Adam Ryan is a blazing young songwriter on the Nashville scene and his delivery of 'Lonely in this Crowd' is worthy of lending your ear to.

Here is what the man behind the lyrics and melodies of 'Lonely in this Crowd' had to say about life, inspiration, the music industry, and the up coming release of his debut album. Read the interview, hear the music and then witness it for yourself on October 1st, Douglas Corner Cafe, Nashville, TN at 6pm.

Q: When did you first start writing songs, and what prompted you to do so?

A: I was kind of a late bloomer. It wasn't until I finished playing baseball in college that I actually sat still long enough and learned to play the guitar. From there, I would write down ideas and then learned that I am my own worst critic. I spent several years fighting the urge to self edit and over analyze. When I moved to Nashville, I was fortunate enough to work at Carnival Music. There I was able to learn what a great song is and was witness to some great stuff in the making. I was one of the first people to ever hear "Anything But Mine" written by Scooter Carusoe. He and I actually recorded the first version of that tune... still have it, it's great. Also, "Angry All the Time" by Bruce Robison... another phenomenal songwriter.

Q: Generally speaking what makes a song a hit?

A: Ask Scooter and Bruce. Ah, you know... people have to identify with it. It's so simple but yet so hard. I just try to write what I know and hope that others can relate.

Q: Do you think it is a good or bad idea to try and "go against the grain" of the typical song writing mold?

A: I try not to think about the mold... that feeds the self critic in me. The best writers are there own thing. There's a Rodney Crowell quote that I love, "Ignorance is the enemy of society. Self-conscieness is the enemy of art." That blew me away when I read it, it's so true.

Q: Who inspires you the most?

A: It started at a young age. Steve Earle when I was twelve. Chris Knight, Springsteen... he's something else I discovered late. Owned the Boss box set when I was a kid... not sure why really, just wanted it. But never really dug in to it until a few years ago. I think the best inspiration, for me, happens when I'm tuned in spiritually. I pray God gives me clarity and the peacefulness to hear the stories he wants to tell. I fight to find that space and quietness.... but when it happens, it's a lot of fun.

Q: Which song of yours do you consider to be your best, and why?

A: That's tough. There are different connections to different songs but I guess "Lonely In This Crowd." It's the title track and one that I wrote by myself. It really captured the place I was in at the time. I was sick of the music business, or at least the scene I was in. Was falling for this girl but hated the situation that surrounded it.

Q: Do you co-write often, and do you consider it important to do so?

A: Yes, you should know! Your husband and I tend to get good results. I don't really do the Nashville co-write thing... I tend to comb over things more than that situation allows. I think its good though. There are great writers in this town. Mostly though, I think the best songs come from a real place and not something contrived. Hey, but who knows.

Q: Do you find the struggles of the music business to be worth fighting for the dream?

A: Dreams are always worth fighting for.

Q: Do you believe that music has changed your life?

A: Does a one legged duck swim in a circle?

Q: How do you think your fans view you as a writer, and person?

A: Not sure. Probably like... "Dude, you're hair is so much longer and you look nothing like you did in high-school!"

Q: Why don't you tell us a little about this New EP of yours Lonely in This Crowd?

A: A while in the making but extremely proud of it. Learned so much and can't wait to get back in the studio... I already have the songs. I just need people to buy this one so I can afford to do it! Beyond that, I'd love to hear what other people think about it. I'm too close to it and some of those songs have been around a while. They have changed meanings a few times and are what they are now. Maybe ask your readers to give some feedback. Would love to hear it!


Jennifer Haase said...

Wow, LOVED this interview!! I'd never heard of Adam before and now I'm sincerely excited to buy this disc and get to know his music, as well as support the livelihood of a fellow songwriter who's out there trying to make his mark in his own individual way. LOVED the Rodney Crowell quote, too! Awesome blog post, thank you for this.

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