An Interview with Phoebe Ryan


It’s Thursday afternoon 2:30pm in Seattle, and while most of us are at our 9-5 jobs, Phoebe Ryan just landed in Washington DC doing a one off show in Georgetown. Her debut EP ‘Mine’ has been getting a lot of buzz and Phoebe seems to be collecting more and more fans in every city she passes through. I had a chance to chat with her over the phone before she made her way out to Seattle on Saturday.

When I walked into Barboza that night I saw Phoebe chatting with fans signing records before she went on stage. While she performed her fans sang along and she interacted with them every chance she got. It was very much like she was playing in our living room, having a good time with her.

After the show I got the chance to chat with her in person and she was the sweetest person I’ve met at a show. She hung out with her fans while Say Lou Lou took the stage and seemed to enjoy the rest of the show with us.

NWMS: How long will the tour last?

P: It started beginning of the month and we’re going until the 24th then a second leg is starting in October going until November.

NWMS:  How do you usually spend the time off?

P: I will go back to LA, that I’ve moved to about 2 years ago, and will be working on my full length record. I meet up with my producer and we sit in the cave all day working on music.

NWMS:  Is there a date that you’re planning on releasing the album, or taking your time?

P: We don’t have an exact date at the moment but we’re aiming for the top of next year, around spring time.

NWMS:  Your tour stops by Seattle on Saturday, have you played here before?

P: When I was in college I was in a folk band and we came and played a house party in Seattle, but that’s as professional as it’s been.

3_markedNWMS:  That still counts as playing

P: Yes, it was super fun, we were selling records from the back of our van, it was great.

NWMS: You’ve been doing this for a few years now, when did you decide this was going to become a career for you?

P: I think it started once I decided what college I wanted to go to, I went to NYU to study music. I wanted to study engineering and production and that’s when it started to take off for me.

NWMS: Did you start by writing songs or did you want to sing when you thought of it?

P: I went to school with an open mind, it was my first time getting into music so I didn’t know. People began to ask me if I could write or help write and realized that was my strong point at the start. I’ve been singing all my life pretty much, I remember when my parents left the house I would have concerts in the living room secretly. I now sing and write my songs so it’s the best of both worlds.

NWMS:  Are you still writing for your record or do you have most of your material ready and just working through it?

P: At the moment I have more than enough songs to finish the album, but we’re not in a huge rush to release it. That gives me opportunity to still write and have fun with it, being able to still shape it.

2_markedNWMS: How did your record deal happen?

P: I had met my A&R years ago in school and I remember almost 3 years ago going into his office and playing him a song. We’ve been friends for a long time and when other labels start to see the material I was putting out online, he stepped in and made it happen.

NWMS:  Is this the first tour you’ve been on?

P: Yes, first time love it keeping me on my toes at all times. There is 11 people on the bus together. It’s weird learning to live on a bus with others. My favorite thing is getting to the city and stepping foot on stage and performing for the fans. Having that new, fresh interaction being the first time meeting the fans. We were in St.Paul MN last night and there was a group of girls singing the words to all my songs. I never been here before, I never met you guys and this is all beautiful.

NWMS: What is the toughest part so far about touring?

P: I would say trying to get my sleep schedule to be normal. I have a hard time sleeping on the bus, I sleep for 3 hours then I’m up for the next 3 and so forth. It’s bizarre living on a car basically, but it’s so fun at the same time.

NWMS: What do you do when you’re not focused on music? Any fun hobbies?

P: Sometimes I worry that I don’t have anything outside of it, good question. I really like learning about birds, bird watching, but not in a creepy way. I have two parakees and I enjoy being around them. I also enjoy Bikram yoga when I have the time.

NWMS: What do you want people to take away from your show after seeing you live?

P: What I think has been great feedback from fans, which is the most important thing to me, is to feel that connection. I make a point to talk to everyone that comes up to me after the show, learn their names, hearing how they found my music, taking pictures and being as friendly as possible. People take away that I want to really connect with them and that they are important to me.

NWMS: Anything fun from touring you want to share?

P: Actually I wanted to take a moment and mention the sisters I’m touring with Say Lou Lou, their music is amazing. They are so nice to be around and their whole band is so interesting and I’ve learned a lot from being on the road with them.

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