Why I Love Ryan Adams

by D I Hughes


Music December 1, 2017

Fame is an unnatural construct, and those who go in search of it are the least likely to find it. – Ryan Adams

I can’t claim to have been aware of Ryan Adams from the very start of his career, but when I came across Heartbreaker at a tender time of my life, I couldn’t quite believe what my ears were processing.

I mean this in a good way, of course.

Ever since then, I’ve been trying to explore every dark corner of Ryan Adams’ colossal back catalogue, and so far it’s been a wonderful journey – and a path I’ll continue to tread for years to come.

In a world where blokes, in particular, are seldom able to talk about their troubles or emotions, the fact the Ryan Adams is never afraid to wear his heart on his sleeve, pulsating and bleeding for all the world to see in all its guitar-drenched, melodic and poetic glory is a sigh of relief, an outlet.

As someone who has experimented with a great deal of sounds and woven a great deal of influences into his signature style, I’ve found there’s a Ryan Adams song for every mood or occasion.

Since hearing ‘To Be Young (Is to Be Sad, Is to Be High)’ all those years back, I’ve been hooked, and I feel like a part of me has grown with Mr Adams’ music.

Live the man’s a delight and his songs have a different kind of depth than they do with his records. Recently I saw him play in Bournemouth and I was blown away by the Grateful Dead-like jam interlude Ryan and his band unleashed on the crowd – it was a mesmerising, unexpected surprise and a mark of an artist with not only immense songwriting talent but an intangible musical feel.

Halloween Head, Dancing in the Dirty Rain, Dreaming’s Free, Nobody Girl, Outbound Train, PaxAm, the feelings, the truth, the authenticity, the drama, the words, the prose, the heart churning sonic echoes that stay with you long after they’re silenced, Let It Ride, Rock and Roll, the Letterman Performances, the hope, the history, and all the rest of it.

A real life, living, breathing, feeling, chanting tunesmith.

That’s why I love Ryan Adams.




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