Winner of the Juno Best New Artist honors, Serena Ryder had written 60 songs for Harmony — and then decided to throw them all out. It allowed her a fresh start, to embrace her full musical self.
With its irresistible beat, boisterous emotions and bursts of exuberant scat singing, "Stompa" is pure joy — and the perfect way to get to know the expansive talents of Serena Ryder. Working with producers/collaborators Jerrod Bettis (Gavin Degraw, Better Than Ezra) and Jon Levine (K'naan, Nelly Furtado) in Hollywood and at her Toronto home studio, the rush of creativity was remarkable both for the results, and its ease. The songs showcase boisterous pop ("What I Wouldn't Do"), lushly sultry soul balladry ("Fall"), raw exuberance (the scat-driven "Stompa") and earthy joy ("Mary Go Round"). And throughout each song is a blend of a joyous embrace of a wide range of styles, at all times honoring her whole musical life.
On "For You," Levine brought in an idea he'd intended for her when they'd first worked together, but had not had a chance to use. Built around a string sample from Nina Simone's recording of "I Put a Spell on You," the song has a simmering tone manifest through Ryder's sultry vocals. "Call Me" carries another shade of the same seductively dark edge. And "Fall," she says, came from wanting "something where you were just so in love that you're falling down that rapid river."
Her favorite, she says. is "Baby Come Back," about "me writing to that be-all, end-all power, God, the universe, whatever. People in their moment of despair will go to that higher power. I was thinking, why then in our moments of happiness, when everything is okay, you forget about that? Where's the gratitude? So I wanted to write about that." The album's lustrous sound, she adds, was brought to full dimension by the other key team member, Joe Zook, whose mix of the music has her "for the first time feeling I was hearing music in 3D."
Serena is currently finishing up her US tour with One Republic, and recently made her US late night television debut on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno. Watch Serena perform "Stompa" below.
Having recently made her U.S. late night television debut, Ryder is bringing her soulful rock to fans across the country this summer with One Republic.
US Tour Dates
Aug 02 - MGM Grand Theatre - Mashantucket, CT*
Aug 03 - Musikfest - Bethlehem, PA*
Aug 05 - Wolf Trap - Vienna, VA*
Aug 06 - Cape Cod Melody Tent - Hyannis, MA*
Aug 07 - WPTE Lounge - Norfolk, VA
Aug 08 - Tags - Big Flats, NY*
Aug 09 - Pier Six Concert Pavilion - Baltimore, MD*
Aug 10 - Hudson River Park - Hudson, NY*
Aug 12 - Hard Rock Live - Orlando, FL*
Aug 13 - Hard Rock Live Arena - Hollywood, FL*
Aug 15 - Chastain Park Amphitheater - Atlanta, GA*
Aug 16 - Time Warner Cable Uptown Amphitheater - Charlotte, NC*
Aug 17 - Tropicana Field - St. Petersburg, FL*
Aug 18 - The Woods at Fontanel - Nashville, TN*
Aug 20 - Blue Bird Theatre - Denver, CO
Aug 22 - Waiting Room - Omaha, NE
Aug 23 - Varsity Theatre - Minneapolis, MN
Aug 25 - Lincoln Hall - Chicago, IL
Aug 26 - The Delux - Indianapolis, IN
Aug 27 - Magic Bag - Ferndale, MI
Aug 29 - Red Rocks Amphitheater - Denver, CO#
Aug 31 - Deer Valley Resort - Park City, UT#
Sep 01 - Idaho Botanical Garden - Boise, ID#
Sep 02 - Chateau Ste. Michelle - Woodinville, WA#
Sep 04 - INB Performing Arts Center - Spokane, WA#
Sep 06 - Edgefield - Troutdale, OR#
Sep 07 - Grand Sierra Resort Theatre - Reno, NV#
Sep 11 - Varsity Theatre - Minneapolis, MN^
* - w/ One Republic, Mayer Hawthorne
# - w/ One Republic, Sara Bareilles
^ - w/ Goo Goo Dolls