RYAN TOWNSEND: musician, singer/songwriter
Mixing folk rock songs with spirited guitars and rhythms, Ryan Townsend is a singer/songwriter creating unfettered acoustic driven compositions that share an alternative decadence and genuine intimacy.
Professing a soulful balance, his voice evokes influences from Joe Cocker to Ray Lamontagne. He travels the divide between genres, crafting tales with a vintage spirit told in a rhythmic full-throated language. “I’ve always been attracted to the emotions and connections that music can make. How a simple melody or lyric can take you back to a certain place or time just like a photograph.”
Based is Nyack, New York Townsend operates out of his studio and label RCT Music Group. He brings his music to a loyal ever-growing fan base performing in and around the New York City metropolitan area and greater east coast. His live show delivers an inspiring and engaging experience playing a wide range of songs that connect with audiences of all ages.
Over the past decade he has recorded and released a widespread catalog of music. His songs have been featured in Lionsgate films, NBCUniverisal television, and on Sirius XM radio.
As a child he grew up exposed to a wide range of music including country, classic rock, rhythm & blues, and soul. In his teen’s he sustained a healthy diet of early 90’s Seattle, appreciating the sounds of bands such as Pearl Jam, Soundgarden, and Alice in Chains.
While learning how to play and write music he was inspired by songwriters such as Van Morrison, Paul Simon, Tom Petty, and Ryan Adams, all who have contributed to Townsend’s influence and sound.
Debuting in 2007 with, The Strangest Tribe, Townsend first gained appreciation when his song “High Street” placed in the finals of the 2008 Billboard Songwriting contest. Soon after he was performing in and around New York City both solo and with a revolving line up of musicians, who helped contribute to his follow up 2008 release, Pieces.
In 2009 Townsend helped establish the jam-rock band Fever Train, as the groups front man and primary songwriter. Releasing two studio albums, Fever Train and Tomorrow, the band headlined at clubs and festivals successfully straddling the line between the rock and jam scenes. They opened shows for national acts including Donna Jean Godchaeux (Grateful Dead), Leo Nocentelli (The Meters), Russell Batiste (Funky Meters, Vida Blue), Questlove (the Roots), and Jimmy Herring (Widespread Panic).
In 2011 Townsend produced another album of solo material entitled Prelude. The album was co-produced with Yan Falmagne, who also recorded and mixed it along with award winning engineer Andrew Cardenas.
From 2012 - 2014, Townsend performed along with Ryan Marks as an acoustic duo under the name R&R. Most notably obtaining a residency at the comedy club Levity Live, where they performed acoustic sets opening up for a number of different touring comics. Some of the acts they supported included Amy Schumer, Carlos Mencia, John Lovitz, Kevin Nealon, Rosie O'Donnell, Pauly Shore, Charlie Murphy, and Rob Schneider.
In addition to his solo work, Townsend was the lead singer and guitarist for the alternative rock band Boxing the Needle. The band worked closely with producer and engineer John Siket for their full length album Collide (2017). Siket is well known for his work engineering Phish albums such as Billy Breathes and The Story of the Ghost, as well as, his work with Steve Lilywhite and the Dave Matthews Band on the album Crash.
Townsend’s most recent release is the single “Only You,” a cover song written by Vince Clarke. The track was produced by grammy nominated music producer Bkorn and features female vocalist Natasha DiMarco.