Jimmy Ryan

Jimmy Ryan

BandAmericanaRock

Combining his knowledge of world music, rock and rootsy bluegrass, Jimmy Ryan fires up his mandolin like a brush blaze in hurricane season. His impressive musical talent is the result of perfecting multiple musical genres, versatile performances and touring with a broad spectrum of musicians.

Biography

LATEST NEWS:
Jimmy released Gospel Shirt (Hi-N-Dry) this year - an EP packed with hillbilly honky-tonk with the usual suspects on hand: Duke Levine (Peter Wolf), Billy Beard (Patty Griffin, Ragman Son Revue), Andrew Mazzone (Twinemen), Kevin Barry (Lori McKenna), Grayson Capps and Christian McNeil (Hybrasil). Billy Conway (Morphine, Twinemen) and Tom Dube (Richard Thompson) have been at the helm recording and engineering; Grammy Award winning producer Trina Shoemaker (Sheryl Crow) produced and mixed it up.

BIO:
Born in New York, Jimmy Ryan was first introduced to traditional American music as a child through the state university, where a local country and bluegrass organization sponsored shows highlighting the nation's musical roots. Jimmy soon took interest in the mandolin. Spending his formative years attending bluegrass festivals, he began honing his own skills as a performer by playing with fiddlers and pickers of all ages and musical backgrounds.

After playing bass in the punk band Decentz, and mandolin in the Vermont bluegrass band Pine Island in the early 80's, Jimmy Ryan formed and fronted alt-country pioneers The Blood Oranges in the late 80’s. Ryan's twangy vocals and diverse musical background stood as the dominant elements of their punk-bluegrass sound. This was surely the start of a movement deemed ‘alt-country’, but was soon stomped out by the grunge-music trend, only to re-emerge circa the demise of the Blood Oranges.

After touring worldwide and releasing three records on East Side Digital, the Blood Oranges disbanded in 1994. Towards the end of the Blood Oranges reign, Jimmy formed and fronted the Beacon Hillbillies with noted mandolin master John McGann, mixing jazz and bluegrass and releasing three records.

After the Beacon Hillbillies projects were completed, Jimmy collaborated with former Blood Oranges guitarist Mark Spencer to create Wooden Leg and release one self-titled album in 1996.

During and after his days fronting The Blood Oranges, Jimmy collaborated with a host of musicians, one of the most notable being his work with former Morphine and Treat Her Right frontman, the late Mark Sandman. Together they played the Boston scene as Treat Her Orange, a partnership that would later blossom into the Pale Brothers (and yield the track "In Spite of Me" on Morphine’s Cure for Pain). Both Treat Her Orange and The Pale Brothers were two talent-laden and interesting side projects that featured live performances but hailed no official albums.

Sandman later reappeared on the Jimmy Ryan/Mark Spencer collaboration Wooden Leg, who toured as an opening act for Morphine.

Jimmy Ryan has toured worldwide and extensively. His innovative mandolin playing has been featured on albums by Morphine, Warren Zevon, Catie Curtis, Dumptruck, Brooks Williams, Gerald Collier, Jake Brennan and many more.

His solo debut, Lost Diamond Angel, is where all the pieces fall into place. Enlisting a superior cast of bandmates including the well-established country guitarist, Duke Levine (Mary Chapin Carpenter, Carol Noonan), Billy Conway and Dana Colley (Morphine), Andrew Mazzone (Kim Richey) and Catie Curtis, Jimmy let his influences and experiences orchestrate 13 songs of startling depth and originality. He plays acoustic mandolin, 6 and 8-string electric mandolin and some mandocello on this stellar solo debut. The disc was recorded at Sandman’s Hi-N-Dry music collaborative by Billy Conway and mixed by Grammy Award Winning producer Trina Shoemaker (Sheryl Crow).

There is rumor that Jimmy has been back at Hi-N-Dry with the usual suspects recording a follow up EP to Lost Diamond Angel. No release date is set, but Trina Shoemaker made the trek up from New Orleans to participate in Jimmy’s latest project and some notable talent has been seen entering the studio over the past few weeks. On the touring front, Jimmy can be found playing with Jake Brennan and The Confidence Men, Hayseed, John McGann, Gordon Stone, Amelia White, Catie Curtis and his old bluegrass band Pine Island throughout New England. He also plays with his own band under the moniker Jimmy Ryan and The Lads where Jimmy’s accomplished songwriting and mando playing take the spotlight as they so deserve. His touring band includes Duke Levine on guitars, Billy Beard on percussion, Andrew Mazzone on bass and on occasion, Kevin Barry on lap steel and guitars and Christian McNeil on acoustic guitar and backup vocals.

Lyrics

I Am Lost

Written By: Jimmy Ryan

I am Lost

I am lost and I have found
I am lost and I have found
I am lost and I have found
I am lost and I have found

Hot sun is beating down
Red desert flies, a buzzing sound
Smell sage in the air
There’s nothing and no one there

I am lost and I have found
Gone too far and the clock is wound
for another day, for another
I am lost and I am whole
In my body and in my soul
I am gone today
I am gone for always

Call out but there’s no reply
I look up at the empty sky
Can’t go on no more
Can’t go on no more

I am lost and I have found
Gone too far and the clock is wound for another day, for another
I am lost and I am whole
In my body and in my soul
I am gone for today
I am gone for always

Redder than big blue sky
See forever it’s long and wide
Sweet scent and buzzing sound
I’m weary, I’m beaten down

I am lost and I have found
Gone too far and the clock is wound for another day, for another
I am lost and I am whole
In my body and in my soul
I am gone for today
I am gone for always

Copyright 2002, Ambitious Recordings #`3 (BMI). All Rights Reserved

Face Up

Written By: Jimmy Ryan

Face Up

Try real hard to
Put a good face up
No one tries more than me
Every time I’d go, I’d see you
They tell me this could never be

Christmas Eve, a lonely beach, staring far out to sea
What could happen to your baby
Is anyone ashamed to be seen

I say yes
but I mean no
Won’t you tell me where did our love go?
Please tell me where did our love go?
I thought you were heaven sent
My guess is you can’t pay the rent
Please tell me where did our love go?

That’s alright now
No need to argue
We’ve got money by the pound
Talking Ginny has her face up
Haven’t seen that for awhile

I say yes
but I mean no
Won’t you tell me where did our love go?
Please tell me where did our love go?
I thought you were heaven sent
My guess is you can’t pay the rent
Please tell me where did our love go?

Try real hard to put a good face up
No one tries more than you
That old racket
Drunken bar room
No one even missed that bride and groom

I say yes
but I mean no
Won’t you tell me where did our love go?
Please tell me where did our love go?
I thought you were heaven sent
My guess is you can’t pay the rent
Please tell me where did our love go?

Copyright 2002, Ambitious Recordings #`3 (BMI). All Rights Reserved

Hardtime

Written By: Jimmy Ryan

Hardtime

When I see you on the street
I wish you were here with me
When I see you on the street
I wish you were here with me

Cause you know what I mean and you mean what I know
And you know what I’m saying
What I’m saying is true
I can’t get myself to believe all the lies
All the lies that I told you

Having such a hardtime baby
Wish you were here with me

Having such a hardtime baby
Wish you were here with me

When I first met you Sally,
you was working in a Mexican bar
You were hanging around with that guy named LeRay
Lord knows, I bet you still are

When you opened your mouth, well I knew there’s no doubt
You just couldn’t be told
Because you knew everything that there was to be known about that hillbilly, hillbilly, rocknroll

Having such a hardtime baby
Wish you were here with me

Having such a hardtime baby
Wish you were here with me

When I see you on the street
I wish you were here with me
When I see you on the street
I wish you were here with me

Cause you know what I mean and you mean what I know
And you know what I’m saying
What I’m saying is true
I can’t myself to believe all the lies
All the lies that I told you

Copyright 2002, Ambitious Recordings #`3 (BMI). All Rights Reserved

John Brown

I was there when John Brown died
Thirteen steps to the gallows high
I saw the look upon his face
He was a proud man
No disgrace

You wouldn’t know to look at you
That man died Lord
He got screwed
All for his love of man
These days couldn’t give a damm, give a damm

When she kissed him goodbye
She had no clue it was for the very last time
You always think
You always plan
You never know when your gonna lose that man

You wouldn’t know to look at you
That man died lord
He got screwed
All for his love of man

There’s a pain in my chest
Now that’s a pain just like
all the rest
It’s a kind of pain you can’t let go
It’s a kind of pain we all must know

You wouldn’t know to look at you
That man died Lord
He got screwed
All for his love of man

Copyright 2002, Ambitious Recordings #`3 (BMI). All Rights Reserved

Discography

Blood Oranges
1990 Corn River (East Side Digital)
1992 Lone Green Valley (ESD)
1994 Crying Tree (ESD)

Beacon Hillbillies
1992 Duffield Station (ESD)
1993 More Songs of Love and Murder (ESD)
1996 Better Place (ESD)

Wooden Leg
1996 Wooden Leg (ESD)

Jimmy Ryan
2002 Lost Diamond Angel (Hi-N-Dry)

2005 Gospel Shirt (Hi-N-Dry)

Set List

Set list includes a variety of original songs from the Blood Oranges, Beacon Hillbillies, Wooden Leg and Jimmy's latest solo records. Covers can vary from traditional bluegrass to reggae to modern day rock.