It’s not often that song lyrics go deeper than love or feelings these days. Although those are the tracks we can all relate to, it’s sometimes refreshing to hear something that cuts below the safety of the acceptable surface and actually brings out some important messages, often avoided in song writing. This is where Midlands based singer/song writer Ryan McMey steps up and uses his music as a platform to raise these issues.
Friday 2nd April sees the release of his latest single “Boomer Baby” and is a lyrical dig at the generation known as baby boomers (the demographic cohort following the Silent Generation and preceding Generation X).
Armed with a list of things that the baby boomer generation have said to him personally over the years, inspiration hit Ryan at the end of January this year. Through a number of voice notes, the song built up, with most of the lyrics for the verses coming from the first voice note alone.
The tune itself is a soft and gentle amble which deceives you into thinking the lyrics too, will be of a more delicate nature. However, what we get is cleverly written, sarcastic response to the cliches thrown his way. The first verse tackles the subject of being a homeowner, and how if Gen X and Millennials stopped buying overpriced coffee and bagels, they’d be able to afford a house. As Ryan points out, “instead of the fact wages have been stagnant for about 45 years, a time span in which house prices have more than doubled”.
Taking inspiration from the popular lo-fi bedroom pop stuff around at the moment, like Cavetown, this musically simple track has a consistent beat that creeps along side a pretty guitar run. Ambient sounds and whistles add whimsical layers to the instrumental sound of this track.
The verbal digs keep coming in the second verse, with a reoccurring cutting line hat asks are you lying or are you stupid?
Recorded using just his laptop and logic pro, the track has endearing qualities purposely left in, like a cough, and Bill the cats, “meow”. The contrast between tune and lyrics, and the approach to production and quality show a creativity not often seen. Daring to go beyond the obvious and tackle subjects with a brave bluntness, this song, and most of Ryan’s back catalogue holds a uniqueness that captures the imagination and fires up his own generation, becoming a much needed voice for them.
Honest and real, this track floats effortlessly with a feel of sensitivity, yet cuts deeper than the sharpest blade.
By: Kate Ford