Guest Author - Kevin Thorburn
Is there such a thing as a sure thing? There is in the music world and Serena Ryder is her name. This feisty ball of energy from Peterborough, Ontario has already formed a formidable resume and the sky is truly the limit from here.
Ryder is a singer/songwriter who excels performing her own compositions and is right at home interpreting and covering the works of others. Some notable covers include Leonard Cohen’s “Sisters of Mercy,” which appeared on her album, If Your Memory Serves You Well and Bruce Springsteen’s “Racing in the Street,” which came about after she found out the Boss was featuring up and coming artists covering his songs on his web site.
If Your Memory Serves You Well is an album made up mostly of covers of prominent Canadian songs, but includes two important singles for Ryder: “Weak in the Knees” and “Just Another Day.” This seems to be the record many newcomers to her music begin with, likely due to the familiarity of the songs contained on the album and the intensity Ryder puts into her renditions.
Unlikely Emergency is an album Ryder released in 2005 and is often overlooked, but gives a satisfying taste of the strength and ability her fans have come to know. This CD also includes a rendition of the popular concert staple, “Sing Sing.”
Her follow up to If Your Memory Serves You Well is Is it Okay, which was released in 2008. This can be considered a breakthrough album for Ryder as she gained acclaim and recognition with the singles “Little Bit of Red,” “All For Love,” and “What I Wanna Know.” The album also won a Juno Award for Adult Alternative Album of the Year for 2009. This award accompanies her 2008 Juno Award for New Artist of the Year. It is with this album that listeners will realize that this is someone who will be around for a very long time. Every track is strong and will leave you wondering, “How have I not heard of this girl before?”
Serena has been touring extensively and, as this author learned first hand, puts on a fantastic show that leaves the audience in awe of her talent and wanting to learn more about this artist. She has been a part of the Lilith Fair Tour and has opened for acts such as Aerosmith. Do not miss the opportunity to check her out; you will not be disappointed.