Ryan Lawler

I don’t understand friends that are nice to each other.  If I was to use more than my allotted number of genuine compliments per week would raise espionage-level suspicion.  This is not to say that I don’t love my friends, it’s just that most of my male friendships, for example, are built on a foundation of obscure insults and elaborate theoretical plots to maim one and other… and that’s OK.  I’m happiest when sharing a verbal-slap with friends, but admittedly this does mean that more serious capabilities and skills are often overlooked.  This tendency, combined with my being blessed with the observational prowess of a wounded bat, undoubtedly caused my failure to sooner realise that there was an exceptional unsigned musical talent lurking in my very own ramshackle friend-pool.

Here’s my mate Ryan Lawler.  I can think of 12 different ways I’d hurt him with a shoe and a piece of linoleum, he thinks it’s funny to serve drinks containing more than 10x the survivable volume of vodka… and also he sings.

Ok, I’m sorry.

Here’s my mate Ryan Lawler.  He’s a really talented singer with a beautifully rich tone which has entirely blind-sided me; such dexterity and control had never been eluded to in our various bar-bellows over the years.  I’m astonished.  Good lad.

Ryan Lawler-Free Falling (Cover)

What’s instantly noticeable in Lawler’s performances is the absence of any exertion.  He doesn’t appear to choreograph his vocals nor make any in-track preparation when he pushes through to a more rock-like tone.  Singing obviously comes naturally to Lawler and his work is visibly effortless.  I am always hesitant when using the word “effortless” to describe an artist as I think sometimes it may imply a lack of effort rather than a lack of the need for effort; Lawler completely embodies the latter interpretation.  There is not an ounce of strain nor falter in his confidence as he seamlessly raises projection or adds a closing trill, making him as much of an enjoyable artist to watch as he is to listen to.

There is a rich warmth to his vocal with a husky inflection teetering on the brink between a whisper and a growl.  It is consistent in sound but diverse in effect, he is able to change the emotion and persona of a track by just the slightest alteration in power to produce a gentle break or an ear-slapping roar.  It’s clear that he is very much in-tune with the pliable facets of his voice, choosing to record covers that allow him to showcase them all in one track, often by imaginatively combining multiple songs.  He treats every recording as an opportunity to showcase as much of his talent to his audience as possible – an admirably savvy tactic.

Ryan Lawler-Major Mash Up

Lawler is very well-rounded artist and plays the guitar with impressive dexterity.  Its acoustic tone really matches the rich vocal and together they produce a deliciously raw and uncluttered sound.  There are currently only cover songs available on Lawler’s YouTube account but it would be really interesting to hear how the combination of his imaginative song composition and his vocal character would translate on an original piece.  He’s certainly a unique and exciting talent and, given some decent exposure, is one who will certainly turn heads at a painfully quick rate.

Unfortunately, this feature has entirely exceeded my lifetime allowance for compliments in our friendship and I am now faced with the choice of actually using that shoe and linoleum or just bidding him good luck and farewell…

…see you soon, Lawler.

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