Band of the Month (January 2019) :: Ryan McMahon
hometown: Ladysmith, BC
Ryan McMahon: Lead Vocals/Guitar
Lance Lapointe: Bass
Phil Wipper: Drums
Joel Spillette: Keys
Band of the Month promo photos are generally courtesy of Rocktographers, a collective of Victoria concert photographers who cover shows, interview rockstars and, each month, provide a free promotional photo shoot for our bands. Ryan’s photos for this Band of the Month were provided.
Twenty years of songwriting has not exhausted the lyrical well of this Ladysmith born singer songwriter. From the beginning, Ryan’s style and genre blending melodies have kept him out of the mainstream and on a path of alternative folk rock.
In 2012, McMahon won three Vancouver Island Music Awards with the release of the album All Good Stories and shortly after joined forces with Christopher Arruda and Cory Woodward to form Lion Bear Fox.
His creative spirit continued to shine with his next solo release in 2015, Put Me Back Together, telling the story of the life of a musician on the road and the role of his partner to pick up the pieces of what is left of him at the end of each run.
The drive to write and record is an ongoing compulsion for Ryan. Even in between commercial releases, he offers up his songs as EP’s released as the Song Shelter Recordings.
In 2017, Lion Bear Fox released their self-titled album in February and the band toured in support of the album.
Now in the beginning of 2019, McMahon is releasing his 6th studio album as a “Hail Mary” to the world to connect amidst the chaos. Come back to this old place, come back to what we are. It’s going to be better than before.
In Line for a Smile – January 2019
Song Shelter Sessions – 2018
Put Me Back Together – 2015
All Good Stories – 2011
Weeks, Months, Years – 2008
Elbowroom Recordings Ltd. is announcing the upcoming album of their flagship artist, Ryan McMahon, due to release on January 18, 2019. The album titled In Line for a Smile is a collection of songs that span topics of the lack of human social connection in the world today, the self-help racket and the need for the human race to place value on family, friends and the enrichment of relationships.
The first single Too Tired for Love is a satirical upbeat number expressing the exhaustive state the world is in trying to keep up profiles of fake happiness while the world is in a state of chaos.
McMahon has been writing and recording music for two decades and this offering to the public is a “Hail Mary” of cynicism and contempt for the false faces the world portrays on social media.
“It is time we all pull off the masks and look up from the devices. There are people all around us if we pay attention. Connections to be made that are physically real and right in front of you.”
Ryan is not unfamiliar to the struggles that the demands of a social media presence can place on relationships. He himself has been guilty of dragging the computer and phone to the breakfast table in hopes of getting a jump on the list of posts and marketing required in a day. The first single Too Tired for Love’s video treatment is a direct telling of that story.
“The internet makes us sad. The more we look at each other’s highlight reel, the more we falsely believe that our environment is not good enough, big enough or getting enough attention. When if your attention is tuned into your environment, you’d be much more grateful for what you have in your life, and more importantly, who you have in your life.”
The album’s lead off track, In Line for a Smile, speaks directly to that thought process. The thought process that we are all waiting for recognition, yet it is in the next human interaction. What is better than looking up and receiving a genuine smile?
In a bold move, the album song listing dives right into a ballad at track two. Track two is a heartfelt number, This House is Not for Sale, telling the story of how McMahon experienced selling the family home. The process set him into reliving many of the memories over the past 39 years. He spent almost four decades growing up in and out of one home. That home held two of his favourite people in the whole world. “I hope the song will trigger a sense of nostalgia and appreciation for the simplicity of the lives that were lived in the not so distant past,” says McMahon. “We need to appreciate more and want less.”
McMahon will start touring the album as soon as the release date hits in January with an initial run of dates in Western Canada and then a week of showcases at Folk Alliance in Montreal during the conference in February. His management team has partnered with Allen Moy of Divine Industries to deliver some of Canada’s best americana talent. On the bill is Ryan McMahon, Tom Wilson, Neil Osborne, Kandle and Justin LaCroix.
Ryan McMahon – Too Tired for Love (download)
Ryan McMahon – In Line for a Smile (download)
Ryan McMahon – Self-Help Book (download)