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RYAN STERLING :: Specks Of Golden Dust (cd)

by Ryan Sterling


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How Time Flies
My Beautiful Child
Stars and Satellites
Still a Little Scared
Gunbower Island
It’s Cold Tonight
I’m Here For You Now
Smoke Will Find A Way

Ryan Sterling is a Melbourne singer-songwriter and musician. His honest storytelling combined with earnest delivery and a unique fingerpicking guitar style blends elements of folk, country, blues, rock and pop.

Ryan combines the influences of English folk musicians and US country/folk artists fused with a deep love of Australian songwriters who explore the Australian experience. Many years working in a secondhand record store and an obsessive desire to listen to many types of music means Ryan has a broad range of influences across many genres. Ryan has a melodic fingerpicking style which draws as much from Joni Mitchell and Nick Drake as it does from Keith Richards and Johnny Thunders. His evocative harmonica playing is inspired by the melodic single note playing of Neil Young as well as the more loose playing of Dylan. Lyrically, he is a huge fan of people who wear their hearts on their sleeve like Guy Clark, Joni Mitchell, Forster/McLennan and Paul Westerberg.

In 2007 Ryan released his first fingerpicked/harmonica vocal album, Never Really There, to some acclaim and radio play on community radio and Triple J. Since then, Ryan has released 18 albums ranging from solo acoustic guitar instrumental records, vocal/guitar and harmonica records and full band indie/country/rock records. His latest release, Specks of Golden Dust, was written after moving back to his hometown. The emotions and memories triggered by that move are a huge part of the makeup of the songs on the new record. Storytelling from his own life, observations of others and a combination of the two.

“I tend to write my songs very quickly, sometimes from a dream or from an experience I’ve just had. I furiously write the words down and if its good its good and if it’s bad…hopefully I realise. I have tried to craft songs in a more intentional way, but they tend to not be as good.” Although the songs tend to be written quickly, they sometimes spring from things that Ryan has been thinking about during what he describes as an “absorption phase” - when he is thinking about various things that may or may not become a song.

Ryan has recorded and played live with Cash Savage and the Last Drinks (harmonica), The Rebelles (Johnny Thunders style lead guitar) and hip hop stars Remi and Sensible J (live acoustic guitar).

All of Ryan’s albums have received play on community radio around Australia and he has had videos played on Rage. His music made up the entire soundtrack to the TV series Leongatha and he provided both the theme song and incidental music for the TV series Community Kitchen. Ryan was honoured to be asked to provide the soundtrack to the AIDS Action Council’s Candlelight Memorial in 2020.
Ryan is very proud and excited to have Specks of Golden Dust released via the legendary label Half A Cow. “There isn’t another label around that aligns so closely with my own tastes and approach to creating music.”