Boston “Songbird” Ryan Montbleau Makes His Anthology Debut

Saturday, October 29, 2011 16:36

An Interview with Ryan Montbleau

by: Casey Pukl

It’s not every day you get to really personally connect with the artist you’re interviewing, but today seemed to be my lucky day. After living in Boston for three years of my life, I find myself missing the city and the music scene there pretty often. This morning I was fortunately enough to speak with both The Barr Brothers AND Ryan Montbleau- both of whom got their start (and Montbleau is still based) in the city. Montbleau, a seasoned performed and songwriter, has been on quite a roll for the past few years. In 2007, he was awarded Male Vocalist of the Year by the Boston Music Awards, and also two International Songwriting Competition awards. He spent 2010 touring with Martin Sexton, and Sexton also produced his last studio album. He was kind enough to give me a glimpse into his writing process, the story behind one of my favorite songs, where the band is headed these days, and what we can expect to see when he takes the Anthology stage tomorrow night!

The Ryan Montbleau Band

CP: I know you spent the beginning of your career playing as a solo act, tell me about how having a band for the last few records  has really influenced or changed your writing process.

RM: You know, I’ve had a band for so long now that it has and hasn’t changed. It’s been 8 years, but I’ve still got the roots of playing as a solo act. I’m still trying to learn to play less. It’s great though. We’re now so familiar with each other’s sounds, that we’ve just gotten more collaborative as time has gone on. I still generally write songs alone and bring them to the band where we’ll work on the arrangement and parts, but more and more, the guys will come up with stuff musically, and I’ll write lyrics to it.

CP: Tell me a little bit about the song, “Carry.” It’s the first song of yours that I heard, and it really stands out. It feels so intensely personal and really commanded my attention. What is it about?

RM: Thank you. I wrote that song at home in this beautiful house we rented, and it’s about my girlfriend. I’ve had a serious girlfriend back at home for a while, and the song is just about people spending time and their lives together. There’s a pretty strong marriage theme. And then we actually shot the video on Martha’s Vineyard where she lives. I think the video for that came out the best of the ones we did.

CP: You had such a huge year in 2010 between touring with Martin Sexton, recording the record. Where do you go from there?

RM: There’s always somewhere to keep going. You know, we were really on the Martin Sexton train last year (laughs). I mean, we toured, put out the record, and then really went on to do our own thing. We had our first change in the line up this year when our viola player left. Lyle is our new guitarist, and since he’s been here, we’ve really grown. I think musically, we just keep getting better and better. We’ve really taken a great turn. We’ve put on some awesome shows this year, and we’re really looking forward to playing Anthology. We seem to do best in listening rooms, and from what I’ve heard, that’s what Anthology seems to be.

CP: Absolutely. It’s an amazing room, and the food is awesome! (Are we noticing a trend yet in my interviews?)

RM: That’s always a plus!

CP: What can our audience expect to hear from your show tomorrow night?

RM: Well, for starters, we’ve got a great opener. The Jason Spooner trio is super tight, and they’ve got a great sound. As for us, we really thrive in a room like this. Everything is so lyrically driven, and the band is tight. We’re excited. We really just read the room and try to give it exactly what it calls for and what the vibe needs.

Be sure to check out my Spotify playlist of some of Ryan Montbleau’s tunes, as well as some highlights from Jason Spooner at the links below! Be sure to come out and see them tomorrow night at 6:30!

Ryan Montbleau

Jason Spooner

WHAT: Ryan Montbleau w. Jason Spooner

WHEN: Sunday, October 30, 2011, 6:30pm
TICKETS: $10-$25 Buy Tickets
MORE INFO: Artist Profile