Serena Ryder – Feels Like Home

Serena Ryder,  hot off the heels of a MMVA for ‘Rock/ Alternative Video of the Year for her new song; ‘Stompa‘- considers the success of her new album; ‘Harmony’,  somewhat home -based.

0fd1a128d78f11e2892d22000a1fb82c_7“The entire album was recorded in L.A.”‘ Says Ryder.'”After almost ridding myself of sixty songs which were penned for the sessions, I decided to simplify everything. ‘Stompa’ took just three hours to record and the entire album was completed in a few weeks.”

Much of the disc’s feel was concocted with an idea of simplicity as the thought process. Ryder wanting to ‘have fun’ and evoke feelings of happiness to whoever hears the songs. Forget their bad days and move into an upbeat state of mind.

‘I had written a lot of songs in Ashbury, my place near Toronto.” Explains Serena.” We have converted a two car garage into a studio and it is covered in raw cedar. The whole thing is like a sauna. We call it the cottage.  It is also decorated by all these old antiques we discovered in and around my neighborhood. Religious statues and that type of thing. It makes me feel comfortable when I am there and it allows me to feel like I am having fun while I am writing and recording.”

For Serena, that feeling delivers her to a growing up era in Peterborough, Ontario. A place where she educated herself musically surrounded by a community of musicians which were and continue to be  – a strong source of inspiration.

1d5c3280d47a11e29e7122000aaa0fd8_7‘Really – it was such a diversity of music growing up. All the musicians I grew up with had it in their blood. One day it was alternative you heard and the next – more popular – type music. There was always something different and it was always a lot of fun.”

Enjoying the process of recording her new album and what is turning out to be her hit song (Stompa) – was first and foremost in Serena’s thoughts. The Juno award winning singer wanted to relax and dive into a session where not too much thinking was going on. Something which happened somewhat accidentally for the 30 year old singer – songwriter.

‘Stompa’ started off as this easy guitar riff. It was just so simple and happy. It 6b97c570d6a211e2933022000aa8032d_7had a primal feel and that kind of worked and set the tone for the rest of the album.We added some hand claps which went wonderfully with the toned down (instrument-wise) feel. It puts a smile on my face and I hope it is infectious …”

‘Harmony’ is Ryder’s sixth studio album and so far – a listener is able to grasp  many different genres from the singer who was once labeled a ‘teenage Aretha Franklin‘. That moniker due to Ryder’s immense vocal range. She is considered a mezzo-soprano, able to hit perfect pitches and sustain a controlled vibrato. A three octave singer and someone to make Canadians proud.

‘It has been quite the trip in the past few years.”Admits Serena” Now I have this celebrity – music styled life and it is quite a difference for me. I do not forget my roots and I am the same person I always was. This is evident in my new album. I owe everything to the wonderful people in Peterborough who taught me everything I know.”

Serena Ryder remains home -based;  through and through…

Ryder is coming to Montreal as part of the Montreal International Jazz Festival. She will be performing on the 2nd of July at Club Soda. She is looking forward to coming and seeing some old friends. People like Xavier Rudd and Daniel Langlois. The last time she performed as part of the Festival – she shared the stage with Adam Cohen. It was a tribute concert to his Father Leonard. Not bad company – eh?

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