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Ryan Orchard

It was while sitting in a roof top garden in Auckland, New Zealand that Taranaki based Musician Ryan Orchard began his relationship with music. After listening to a close friend play some of their favourite songs on his guitar that night, Ryan was inspired to learn to play himself – a life changing decision that not only revealed a passion for both performing and writing music that he never knew he had but would lead to a total redefining of himself.


Move forward a few years and Ryan has achieved a great deal to be proud of. He has played countless gigs around Taranaki and the North Island, has performed twice at the highly popular and sought after TSB Festival of Lights in Pukekura Park, New Plymouth. Won the 2008 ‘Sounds From Your Home Town’ music competition for the Taranaki region and was the driving force behind the inaugural Most FM ‘Acoustic World Tour of Taranaki’ in 2010. In 2008 he financed, produced and released his debut album ‘Chasing Sunsets’ and released a follow up album 'Living Inside Out' in mid 2014. His latest album 'Sing It Loud!' will be released on May 20th 2017. 


From a farming background and what he describes as “a family that has always loved, appreciated and enjoyed music, but are not passionate performers, singers or musicians” Ryan is well aware that his passion for playing and writing is something that sets him apart from other people in his life. His drive and need to communicate through music to both make sense of his own feelings and to express his thoughts and life philosophy is something that people often appreciate and celebrate, but don’t always understand. “For me, music is a means of connecting and communicating with others. The way that you can listen to a song, and so closely share an experience and feel so connected to the person singing the song because you identify with what they are singing about is incredible. A great song can evoke a sense of empathy so strong that it hits you at your very core. It’s funny, all a song is, is a collection of noises... guitars, bass, drums, vocals, - individually they don’t mean a lot but together they are greater than the sum of their parts, together they create something intangible, something so meaningful.. sometimes a song is so strong it has the power to take you away, to make you forget about your life for a moment and take you to another place, another country or even another time.


As an artist Ryan describes his style as a cross between singer songwriter and 1950s rock n roll. His musical influences are diverse and many spanning from John Mayer, Matt Nathanson and David Gray to Bruce Springsteen and more recently Passenger. For Ryan, lyrics and melody are the core focus of his music. Lyrics should always focus on truth and integrity “I would never write something I didn’t believe in just to make it rhyme” he says. Layers of meaning are also something he strives to achieve, “My lyrics can be taken at face value or you can dig further to find a deeper meaning” he says.


Ryan believes that his music is an extension of himself, a way of expressing who he is and how he sees the world. Describing himself as a positive and optimistic person who believes in enjoying every moment, surrounding yourself with positive people and always striving for self awareness and happiness, he emphasises the importance of being true to yourself.  “At the heart of nearly every song that has ever been written is a relationship - whether that be a relationship with another person, your relationship with the world or with yourself. My songs are about a variety of things, some are about love, some are about the struggles and tough situations I have endured, at the core every song I write is about having strength in yourself, rising above the judgement of others, being honest with yourself and who you are and most importantly, my songs are about hope.”


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