June 17th, 2018

Coming off a great year, Ryder ready for the Hat

By Medicine Hat News on February 15, 2018.

Stan Ashbee

Special to the Medicine Hat News

For Canadian songstress Serena Ryder, exciting times continue in 2018, as the multiple Juno-Award-winning singer and songwriter closes off the album cycle of her latest album “Utopia” with a West Coast tour, which includes a stop in Medicine Hat at the Esplanade Feb. 23.

Ryder’s latest release was dropped last spring and included the radio hits “Electric Love,” “Got Your Number,” and “Ice Age.” Other hits from Ryder’s catalogue include the quadruple platinum in Canada anthem “Stompa” and “What I Wouldn’t Do.”

The year 2017 was also a great year, according to Ryder, as she performed at festivals, theatres and clubs across Canada and abroad with a variety of band ensemble incarnations.

“Sometimes it’s seven, sometimes it’s eight,” she noted earlier this year.

“This time around, it’s going to be a four-piece,” she said about the upcoming show in the Hat.

Ryder’s live show is an interactive and high-energy showcase of her talents, which are at the top of her game, according to fans and those soon-to-be future fans of her live performances.

“A lot of people that come and see me play, that haven’t seen me perform live before say it sounds better than the album, which is always really a huge compliment and pretty exciting. I guess there’s more energy and people usually say my voice sounds better even than on the recording,” said Ryder, joking she hopefully doesn’t mess it up. “And make it sound worse.”

Prior to the New Year, Ryder collaborated with fellow Canadian musician Shawn Hook on a cover of John Lennon’s “Happy Xmas (War Is Over).” The two performed on a variety of holiday TV and radio specials including CTV’s “The Original Santa Claus Parade.” Ryder also sang the Canadian national anthem at the 2017 Scotiabank NHL100 Classic, which was broadcast live on “Hockey Night in Canada.”

For the uninitiated, Ryder honed her craft from her teens and with her albums, EPs and live releases. Ryder also toured across Canada last year to celebrate Canada’s 150 years and performed at premiere events including the Canada Day 150 Celebration on Ottawa’s Parliament Hill, the 50th anniversary of the Formula 1 Grand Prix du Canada in Montréal, and the opening ceremony of the Canada Games in Winnipeg.

With one holiday song in the can last year, Ryder and her manager were approached by legendary producer Bob Ezrin (from Kiss and Alice Cooper fame) about recording a Christmas album.

“When I finish this tour, I’m going to be recording a Christmas album, believe it or not, for next year. It’s going to be super fun and I’m doing it with Bob Ezrin, which is going to be amazing. It’s kind of cool to be doing a Christmas album with the man who did Pink Floyd’s ‘The Wall.’ And then I’m going to start working on my own album in the spring,” Ryder explained, adding she’s always wanted to do a jazz record.

Ryder knew this would be a great opportunity to do an old school Ella Fitzgerald or Billie Holiday jazz-style record.

“Which is just kind of broken down acoustic style, so that’s how it came together,” she added.

As for writing new music and working on a new album, Ryder noted that won’t happen until a recording studio is built in a new building she bought with her manager.

“I always write a lot, but there’s nothing I feel like I’m going to put on the album yet. When I finish building the studio and kind of hunker down in that space, that’s kind of when it will start working its way out, I think,” she said.

When back home long enough, Ryder said she occasionally checks out the live Canadian music scene, as well.

“It’s kind of exploding into the world-wide scene, which is pretty amazing — especially for young urban artists.”

Don’t miss an evening with Serena Ryder. Tickets for the show are $45 plus G.S.T. and service charges. Tickets can be purchased online at tixx.ca. Show starts at 8 p.m.

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