Or maybe both?
There will always be arguments about Ryan Adams. There’s his spotlight hungry persona (he’s now engaged to Mandy Moore), his mythical tantrum filled concerts, and the old quality vs. quantity argument. But aside from all of that, his bloated catalog of music verges on brilliant at it’s high points.
His music has always been a good companion for a rainy day. That fact, on this rainy day, is what sent me digging through the vastness that is the Ryan Adams section of my iTunes.
I’ve collected here some 30 tracks of what is for me the best and brightest of his output. It’s pretty amazing looking back on it all. He’s just barely in his 30’s and has 10 properly released solo albums (three of those as Ryan Adams & The Cardinals). And that’s saying nothing about his pre-solo career with Whiskeytown, the many other full length demo albums floating around the internet, the full length cover of The Strokes‘ Is This It LP on mandolin that no one’s ever heard, and the tracks he’s posted to his blog under so many poorly thought out pseudonyms (Werewolph!?).
That amount of output says alot about an artist. Good and bad. Self editing can be a great thing. But when the good is as good as say Oh My Sweet Carolina, I’ll take the bad that comes with it any day.
I’ve been listening to some of these songs for years, and they always put me in a happily nostalgic place. Hope they can do something for you too.
From the Heartbreaker LP:
From the Gold LP:
From the Demolition LP:
From the Gold Bonus Disc 2:
From the Love Is Hell EPs:
From the Cold Roses 2LP:
From the Jacksonville City Nights LP:
From the Easy Tiger LP:
From the Cardinology LP:
Various unreleased tracks: