Ryan Adams Steps Back in the Studio
Alt-rock darling Ryan Adams just doesn’t quit! The critical favorite is back in the studio despite his latest effort with his band the Cardinals, Cardinology, being barely a month old! The new material is loosely being titled Dear Impossible, and Adams is working with engineer Noah Goldstein on over a dozen new songs such as “Firefly,” “Please, Hold One” and “Your Name Here.” Adams has described the new material as similar to 2004’s Love Is Hell and wrote on his blog that it is “like a more pop, melodic style.” Adams will finish 2008 with a string of shows with the Cardinals and start a headlining tour in Feb. 2009. Check out http://www.stubhub.com/ryan-adams-tickets for Ryan Adams tickets.
Ryan Adams was born in Jacksonville, NC and raised on the country music of classic artists like Johnny Cash, Loretta Lynn and Merle Haggard, although in his teens his discovered punk rock and began playing electric guitar. This explains Adams’ penchant for alt-country music that has burst into the mainstream. Adams formed his first band the Patty Duke Syndrome and relocated to Raleigh, NC with the group when he was 19, but the fledgling musician abandoned the projects in order to expand his musical horizons.
In 1994 Adams left PDS and formed Whiskeytown with guitarists Phil Wandscher and violinist Caitlin Cary. Bassist Steve Grothman and drummer Eric “Skillet” Gilmore completed the lineup and Whiskeytown (they got their name from a local slang word for getting drunk) released their debut album Faithless Street on local label Mood Food. The album was critically lauded and had fans saying it was just what the alt-country genre needed. By the time Whiskeytown signed with major-label Geffen’s imprint Outpost Records and released Stranger’s Almanac in 1997, Adams and Wandscher were the only band members left. For the next two years the lineup varied as Wandscher left and Cary returned among other shifts, and the band’s third album, Pneumonia, was shelved due to label issues. Whiskeytown soon dissolved, leaving Adams to kick off a solo career with a string of solo acoustic tours.
After launching a solo career, Adams stepped in the studio in Nashville with songwriters Gillian Welch and David Rawlings to work of his first record under his own name. The resulting Heartbreaker was issued via pioneering label Bloodshot Records in 2000 and did well in sales, received positive critical reviews and was endorsed by none other than Elton John! After signing with Universal’s new Americana imprint Lost Highway Records, the label rereleased Whiskeytown’s Pneumonia in early 2001 and later that year issued Adam’s sophomore solo effort, Gold. The album veered toward pop and rock reminiscent of the 1970s and its opening track, “New York, New York,” was a popular radio anthem in the aftermath of the September 11 terrorist attacks. Hailed music’s “next big thing,” the prolific songwriter set out to work on another album and wound up with enough solid material to produce four albums, but instead Adams stripped down the 60+ songs to just 13 tracks to appear on 2002’s Demolition. In 2003 the concept album Rock N Roll was released along with the double-EP Love Is Hell and Adams embarked on a rampant world tour.
In May 2005 the double-disc Cold Roses signaled the first of three releases for Lost Highway. The melancholic album was followed by Jacksonville City Nights that September, a classic honky-tonk record, and 29 that December. After delivering tracks to fans via his website, Adams released proper albums in the form on 2007’s Easy Tiger and 2008’s Cardinology with the Cardinals. To see Adams when he hits the road next year, get your Ryan Adams tickets soon!