Melbourne rapper Ryland Rose (who you may have known as simply ‘Ry’) started making a name for himself in 2016, particularly when his single ‘Almost Famous & Broke’ leapt into the top-5 of Billboard’s and Spotify’s viral charts off the back of an inventive Snapchat-forged video clip, and now it’s ready to take its place as the title track of his debut album.
Having just dropped his latest track ‘Brooke Shields’ and wrapped up his Australian tour in support of UK hip hop artist Loyle Carner, Rose is unleashing his record this first full-length record this Friday (you can grab a copy of the album here) – but we’ve got the jump on it a day early.
As it turns out, the success of its title track punctuated the album’s writing process, giving it a sort of split-personality.
“Half of the album was written before the single ‘Almost Famous & Broke’ was released,” Rose tells us. “The other half was done after everything had happened with the success I had on Spotify and charting on Billboard. At first it was just a cool name for a song, then I was flying to Sydney to meet with labels and could barely afford a coffee – that’s when the term ‘Almost Famous & Broke’ kind of became my mantra for this album. I found my angle and just channeled in on it for the second half of the record.”
“The album name is a metaphor for a heap of things but I think what it preaches most to me is to remain patient. Initially we were in such a hurry, then one song finally clicked – it just kind of reminded me that everything works out and to trust your art. It was actually supposed to be an EP at first, but with the success of the ‘Almost Famous & Broke’ Snapchat video, and the momentum it gained – I decided to hold on a bit longer and see what else we could come up with.”
While ‘AF&B’ may serve as the mantra, it’s crossover gem ‘Sunroofs’ that’s become Rose’s favourite cut.
“I remember getting the voice memo from Jake (the album’s producer) with a rough loop of ‘Sunroofs’. I didn’t realise but I think I was craving something that was a crossover of genres – EDM/Rap/Pop. I just remember us both being so hyped when it was finished.”
As it turns out, ‘Sunroofs’ are an indication of where most of Rose’s time is spent writing – on the road.
“The album has a dark, night theme to it because that’s where I write most of my music or come up with most of my ideas,” he says. “At night, driving around. I think Jake’s production method is very similar too. There’s still upbeat parts, but I’ve always loved albums you can drive around and zone out too, that have a cinematic story to them – I guess I just subconsciously made it like that without realising.”
Now, releasing his debut is the culmination of a year and a half of work for Rose, one from which he’s still recovering.
“So much has happened in the past year. I’m still kind of in shock. All these songs were recorded in my home studio, and then mixed by Jake at his. Both of us just spent hours learning our crafts and did it as independently as possible, juggling part time jobs and life between it.
“It’s been a ride, about 18 months worth of work and I couldn’t be happier with the outcome.”