Originally, I started writing a bio in the 3rd person, but it feels completely ridiculous. Besides, the adjectives are much too unbelievable to sustain any real credibility. So, as you read, know that I am in the process of working my way up from 'humble beginnings' to 'bigger things.' By the way, my name is Ryan James.
I grew up in Texas. I was born in Houston. I attended Texas Tech and South Plains. I live in Austin, and as the late, great Hank Snow would say, "I've been everywhere, man." (in Texas anyway)
I've been blessed in my 26 years - I have a supportive family, a great wife, and I spend most of my time writing music. As a matter of fact, my first and recently released album, Back to the Wind, is made up of 12 songs, of which 10, I'm proud to say, are mine. I was extremely fortunate with this project because Walt Wilkins and Tim Lorsch produced this album. They are both men I respect tremendously because they are not only gifted musicians but extraordinary people.
A good friend of mine, Randy Sitzler - who is from Michigan, says about Back to the Wind, "Man that sounds like Texas." You know, I think he's said it best so far. I'm not really sure if he meant that as a compliment, but that's damn sure how I took it.
So now I suppose I tell you my influences, but it's too confusing for me to understand much less explain. So, I'll say this with a touch of sarcasm - I have been compared to Pat Green, Jackson Browne, Chris Isaak, and one lady even said George Strait. Personally, I think it's all crazy talk because not one of those artists has anything in common with the next - except that they are all men. So, that's good at least. But I promise, if I start getting more consistent comparisons, I'll let you know. I will add that I listen to a lot of the typicals - Merle, Willie, Cash, and Jones. But more than that, I like Buddy Miller, Darrell Scott, and most of the current Texas artists. For a more spiritual experience, I go to the singer/songwriter types like Slaid Cleaves, Guy Clark, Ray Hubbard, and Sam Baker. (the list is ridiculously long)
You should know that I'm in this 'game' for the long haul. This is the life that I love - it's the road, the bars, the people - this is my home. Walt Wilkins once told me something that Willie Nelson said, and I love it..."It's more than I deserve, but I'll take it anyway." My talents are gifts, not rights; and I respect that relationship. So I am humbled and honored to be a part of this business.
So friends, I say, I hope to see you real soon, and when we meet, we are sure to have one hell of a time.