Not Just Another Girl, Ryan's debut CD, is a diverse musical journey. Ryan is influenced by many different artists, and genres, and it's evident in her music.
Maybe, (track 1) is a fun high energy pop offering. Everyone who's heard the song, (friends, family, and fans), have told her "it's a hit!" The opening bars draw the listener in, and the lyrics are personal, yet universal and vividly descriptive. The tune is really catchy. Most people who hear it, walk away singing the hook. Maybe also features a classical-esque piano solo.
Another Girl (track 2) has a fabulous edge of angst. Ryan calls it her "intimate angry" song. The hook is big and explosive, yet the verses are heart felt and vulnerable. Like Maybe, Ryan has been able to turn her personal experience into a universally expressive song that anyone who's experienced unrequited love can relate to. The percussion on Another Girl is also a wild fun ride. It's a mix of textured bongos and a straight up rock kit with a spot light on the toms.
A Hard Place, (track 3) is a throw back to the 60's. Lyrically, it exposes powerful imagery of being or feeling trapped. Ryan is a lover of The Beatles, and you can hear their influence in A Hard Place. The song features Ryan's producer Terry Fabrizio on a fabulously sexy guitar solo.
Love Her Madly (track 4) Ryan's only cover. Get ready for the unexpected, (well, I guess these notes kind of give it away huh? ;-) Love Her Madly opens with a a salute to the famous Habanera from the amazing opera Carmen, (see, I told you Ryan was influenced by all genres of music.) "The Habanera Lick" is woven through the tune and establishes the Latin flavor of this cover. Ryan does a great job with the vocal, it's minimalism at its best, a sultry tease, you're gonna love it!
Boy & Girl (track 5) is another throw back, this time to the era of The American Popular Standard. Boy & Girl is Ryan's prettiest vocal, it's "the holding hands" song. The melody line is beautiful, but the lyrics really to the leading. Ryan paints a picture of a touching love story from her past, which again, she makes very accessible and universal. Boy & Girl has a touch of the etherial to it, it hovers up above the listener.
Call Your Love Mine (track 6) is a gentle reverent song, one of three on this CD, that showcases a beautiful string section, (all strings arranged by the world renown Angelo Dippipo.) Ryan originally wrote Call Your Love Mine, as a wedding present for her cousin and his fiancé. It almost didn't make the album. Ryan didn't include it on the list. In the process of making final song choices, Ryan just happened to play it for her producer Terry, and he fell of his chair. "That's the one" said Terry.
The Superhero Song (track 7) is a WALTZ!! So get out your ballroom dancing shoes. It is the second song on the album showcasing a string section. It has a very classical feel to it. The Superhero song tells a story about an artist, (who is also a Superhero), in love and inspired by a woman, (his muse), to create. The muse/damsel in distress, also deeply in love with the artist/hero, depends on the hero to save her from the evil villain, and to immortalize them in a work of art... in the form of a comic book.
Love Me Up (track 8) the most provocative song on the album, Love Me Up is a 12 bar blues for all you traditionalists out there ;-) It is one SEXY tune. You wanna make out? You wanna get it on? You wanna have a good time, turn on this track and let the love making begin.
Far Out (track 9) is the last offering that features the gorgeous string section. Lyrically, there is an element of misfit to it. It's about the human being who's on the outs, definitely NOT in with the in crowd. There's also a strung out flavor to it, you can't really tell if this person is okay with the fact that they're so Far Out. One minute, Ryan's vocal relishes this Far Out place, and the next, she's freaked out by the situation. Ryan describes it as a "destination song" or a "vacation song."
The Monkey Song (track 10) well, now we're getting into wacky territory, both musically & lyrically. Ryan is an artist who's not afraid to experiment and take chances. Interpret this song any way you want, literally or figuratively. This song is about the evil, or The Monkey on your back. Maybe it's an addiction you can't kick, maybe a toxic love you can't let go of, maybe the boss you hate, it may be a recurring nightmare you can't shake. Whatever the Monkey symbolizes for you, The Monkey Song is a seductive, witty, dangerous and manipulative tune. Musically, it opens with a vocal over a sparse arrangement featuring the bass and just a hint of percussion & guitar, then it settles into a hip R&B funk, and finally goes into overdrive mode channeling an old world Buddy Rich-esque shuffle. The Monkey song kicks, and it's full of musical twists and knock out crazy science fiction fantasy lyrics. (For all you Shakespeare buffs, listen for the quote from the Scottish Play in the last verse.)
Without You (track 11) is another big pop song with an explosive hook. It marks the process of someone recovering from a break up. Ryan sings about the elements the sun, the moon, the winds, coming to her aid to burry the past and sail into the future. Ryan's vocal on Without You is huge and keeps getting bigger and bigger, with a modulation at the end of the tune.
You're Not My Type (track 12) is the final tune on the album. It's got a live feel to it, and is in the American Popular Standard/Jazz genre. It swings, and sounds like it could have been written in the 1950's. You're Not My Type is a cool relaxed vocal. The Ryan's lyric is in charge, subtle and extremely laid back. Lyrically, it's jammed packed with cute little nuggets & references. Ryan wanted to leave the listener with a little wink, a cherry on top, a big red bow, and You're Not My Type is that icing on the cake.