Playing at the Ryman Auditorium in Nashville 12 years ago, Ryan Adams was heckled by a concertgoer repeatedly asking him to play ‘Summer of ’69,’ which is of course a Bryan Adams song.
Pretty much every Ryan Adams song from his mellow, acoustic, alt-country phase is a good listen. They’re not all mind-blowing (though a few are) but you can’t go wrong putting them on in the background while you go about your daily life.
I feel the opposite about his harder-edged albums, which sound more like noise than music. Is it just that he’s really good at the one and not so good at the other? Or maybe it’s just my tastes.
I have to start with a song that’s been running through my mind for almost a week now, ever since we drove into L.A. for the second half (or third third, if you count the drive from San Francisco south) of our trip.
But as my professional life improves, my blog writing suffers. I bet if this blog didn’t have a built-in daily deadline, I would have let it slide long ago. It would look like so many blogs out there, suspended in time on some random date like a town abandoned after a zombie apocalypse.
Ryan Adams is a perfect example.
He has released at least two albums (Gold and Heartbreaker) that I love start to finish — albums filled with powerful, beautiful songs. His collection of unreleased singles, Demolition, is similarly strong.
It was way back at Song of the Day #2 that I last featured Ryan Adams on this blog. I’ve written about 276 songs since then, and I believe Adams has recorded that many during the same span.
And now we meet again, and I’m featuring another song from the same album I highlighted back then. Adams is perhaps the most prolific songwriter working today but I can’t get past those first two albums, Heartbreaker and Gold, which contain more than enough genius to go around.
Adams recently married Mandy Moore — bright, sunny Mandy Moore — which is kind of funny considering how messed up he comes across in his songs. He once dated Winona Ryder (as have most rock stars) and that seems a better fit.