An Interview With RYDYR On His Newest Track, ‘Dream Alone,’ How Is He Handling The Quarantine and More!
On his newest single “Dream Alone” and forthcoming 2020 EP, RYDYR crafts bold and bright pop, offset with alternative adventurousness and timeless rockstar ambition, rooted in live instrumentation and unfiltered lyrics.
Hailing from a tiny town thirty minutes south of Dallas, TX, RYDYR relocated to Los Angeles and launched a career in entertainment that went from booking gigs on the Disney Channel to joining pop sensation IM5, tallying tens of millions of streams and views, contributing music to Disney and CBS productions, and performing for countless fans.
Ready for the next stage of his evolution, he wrote songs throughout 2018 and 2019 that would become his independent debut EP and recorded them alongside producer Zakk Cervini (Good Charlotte, Poppy). The first single, “Dream Alone”, is upheld by finger-picked acoustic guitar, a snappy beat, and fluttering harmonies, while the vocals stretch from vulnerable verses into a hummable hook.
“It’s an internal dialogue,” explains RYDYR. “The song is almost like me speaking with the last version of myself. The voice of truth is always inside of you. It’s there to help you get through life. Sometimes, we ignore it, because we’re not used to listening to it anymore as adults, or we’re just lost. You can find help and light at the end of the tunnel inside by listening.”
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Learn more about RYDYR in the following All Access interview:
Thanks for your time today, Cole. So how are you keeping busy and musical these days during this crazy Covid-19 pandemic? How are you staying connected to your fans?
Thanks for having me!!! Luckily as a writer and musician any room is really your office, so my life hasn’t changed to much. I’m also blessed to have a home studio – so if anything its made me create more!! I am able to stay connected through social media which is nice, but most importantly I’m creating more music for them and thats my best way of expression.
What kind of music do you think is going to come out of these crazy times?
Hopefully very inspiring – uplifting music. Definitely some new vibes for sure. I know I’m making a lot of new music with a different feel than anything I’ve done before.
Can you recall the moment when you thought you could be a musician? What do you think motivates you day in and day out? How has that changed over the years?
I always dreamed of it when I was young. Hearing music from the 70’s and 80’s made me dream of being a rockstar. Later on I was in a boy band that taught me a lot and made me really think this was a possible career path. Now that I’ve given it a shot and started writing music for myself , I’ve really started to feel like I’m evolving into the artist I’ve always wanted to be. Its so exciting!
How do you think your hometown has influenced the kind of music that you make? If not, why is that? How do you think moving to LA for your career changed you?
Great question!! I’m from a small town south of Dallas which naturally put me around country music and a few other southern styles that have stayed with me. Country has influenced the story telling and sound design in some of my music for sure. I have always wanted to make music leaning even a bit more country as well… So we will see what happens!!
How did you go about picking your artist name? Why not just go by your own name?
Ryder is my mothers Maiden name. I didn’t want to go by my normal name because I wanted the ability to create something new. I wanted a creative outlet outside of myself, but still using a name that had meaning. So I thought adopting my moms name would be a really cool way of still being true and symbolic, while giving me a secondary brand to build.
Growing up, how important was music in your life? Was your family and friends supportive of this career choice? If you weren’t a musician today, could you see yourself doing anything else?
Music is probably one of the most important things in this world. There is always a song that fits each moment. Or helps you in a hard time. It makes you not feel alone. Choosing this path is something that everyone around me supports (thankfully). If I weren’t a musician I would be pursuing acting more full time. But I do have other interests – I could’ve played pro soccer. I also would love to be an astronomer.
What has been the biggest surprise so far about making music your career? What has been an unexpected or welcome challenge to it all? What has been the best part?
The biggest surprise has been finding out more about myself while developing my creative process. Writing is all about finding the voice inside you. Connecting with yourself. Each time a moment of inspiration hits… and you recognize it as that.. you grow. You learn that voice and the feeling of that connection. Each time it becomes more familiar. That has been the most exciting thing to discover.
Let’s talk about your newest single, “Dream Alone.” What was the inspiration for this track? How do you think it prepares people for your forthcoming EP?
For me the inspiration was reflecting on a time in my life I felt unstable and felt as if I had lost touch with who I was. The fear and beauty that comes from feeling lost was the inspiration for Dream Alone. I think sonically this sets the tone for most of the project. They all live in the world we created. Shout out to my brother Zakk Cervini for making almost every song on the project with me.
What was it like making the music video for “Dream Alone”? How creatively involved with the making of it were you?
Dream Alone video was a blast. We got to explore some beautiful parts of Northern California near Folsom and feel like we were making a little movie. I’m really proud of it. I had the idea and took it to my Director Erik Rojas who helped me turn it into reality!! I like to be involved in every aspect of the video. I’ve learned that is the only way the vision will come to life exactly how I see it. Something that was fun for this video in particular, was it was my first time attempting to create sound design. The last 15 seconds of audio after the song ended.. I made that.
What was it like making your EP with your producer Zakk Cervini? How did that relationship first come to be?
I met Zakk after being introduced to Joel Madden. He told me that I needed to meet this guy and create with him . The rest is history!! He’s just such an amazing human being ,and one of the most talented people I’ve ever met in my life.
Why did you decide to start your own label? Has anything surprised about the process of creating Shadow Wood Records? At some point, would you like to support other artists under this label?
Mainly wanted to be able to stay completely in control and independent. I’m treating myself as a test subject so when we do sign on other artists (which I really hope to get to do someday) they will have an even better well oiled machine.
How do you feel about social media? What do you think social media has done for your career so far? What is it like keeping up with all your different accounts? What is your favorite way to connect with fans?
I have a love hate relationship with social media to be honest. I enjoy having a platform to access my fan-base easily. But I fear the negative side effects of social media. I think its an addiction and it can really mess with your head. I feel like it has for me. I think like any great tool it can be amazing if used correctly.
What musicians would you absolutely love to work with in the future? Who has been inspiring you and the music that you make?
Jon Bellion or Ed Sheeran would be fun to collaborate with. Another Artist I admire is Matt Maeson. I think these artists all write from a very true place and that’s what I strive to do. Would love to learn from each.
Where would you still love to hear a song of yours played?
Honestly I feel like my music could be great for films. Having a song be on a movie soundtrack is definitely a goal.
At the end of the day, what do you hope people take away from your music?
I just hope people connect with it. I hope it makes them think and feel amazing at the same time.