Singer-songwriter Ryan Laird is usually referred to as the Keith Urban of Canadian country music, and it’s not difficult to understand why the comparison is made.
Laird has just released If I Ever Lost You, a county pop track that doesn’t necessarily reinvent the genre, but it doesn’t have to.
That’s the part of the lure of country, and perhaps country-pop in particular; we know what we’re getting—accessibility whose surprise elements are restricted to how hooky (or rousing) the chorus is. In the case of Laird’s new release, there’s no issue. Laird was initially discovered after spending his life savings renting a huge Nashville music row billboard appealing to Taylor Swift to produce his album.
This stunt led to a Nashville publishing deal and a Canadian record deal with Sony Music Canada. That’s quite a stunt. Now, why didn’t anybody else think of that? Since his signing, Laird has received many accolades, including two Canadian Country Music Award nominations for “Rising Star” and “CMT Video Of The Year”, as well as a Canadian Radio Music Awards nomination. He has toured extensively—opening for international country stars Alan Jackson and Dierks Bentley on their Canadian tour dates—and has written songs with Nick Carter of The Backstreet Boys. A
s Ryan says about the new release, ‘This song isn’t what you’d think when you first hear the title—it’s about the most quintessential type of love that you could have.’
After two decades of playing, writing, and recording (Laird released his first indie album when he was 13), Laird has honed his craft and style, which he describes as ‘catchy, emotionally evoking modern country with a jazzy pop twist.’ I guess one would need to examine the entirety of Laird’s output to ascertain just what this twist is but for now If I Ever Lost You makes for an easy, smooth entry into Ryan Laird’s world.