When I got into Birmingham for my chat with Ryan I didn’t know what to expect. Spending time with a member of your favorite bands is as exciting as it is when you’re a kid and you taste an ice cream for the first time. Birmingham was very cold that day but I was hesitant to just get backstage, sit down and talk.
“I didn’t prepare any question, I just want to have a conversation with you” I tell him ahead of our talk. He laughs.
Ryan Scott Graham is the bassist and backing vocalist for State Champs and right now they’re in Birmingham on their UK tour supported by Northbound and As It Is. They’ve got one show left in London then Ryan is off to Florida to work on his second album for his solo project “Speak Low If You Speak Love”, an acoustic project he’s very passionate about.
Why did he start making music? What made him grab that bass at such young age?
“Growing up I was a baseball player, and that’s what I thought I would do and then as I went to school – this is funny because I remember very vividly- one of my friends had a t-shirt with a local band on it, they were called The Great Basement Escape, the t-shirt had a ship on it. I wanted to buy the t-shirt so my friend said they were playing a show that week and I should’ve gone. At that time, I wasn’t playing or listening to any rock music. I didn’t know what to expect. I was probably 14? I ended up going to this show with him. I was amazed, it was cool although I didn’t really understand anything about it. It was totally strange to me. I was wearing this big jersey and sweatpants. I looked ridiculous … after that, I asked my mom to buy me a guitar. I started learning by myself and here I am.
If you’ve never thought about Ryan playing the World Series, this is definitely your chance. It’s true State Champs came after his acoustic writing but that’s how he started and well-known in the music scene.
But speaking of which, what are the struggles of a musician nowadays to be successful? What does inspire him and why is Ryan so passionate about Japan, books and art?
Watch the full interview here: