Listening to Ryan Tennis is like taking a road trip to a new place with an old friend. Songs range from soul-touching acoustic ballads to roots funk and soul to rollicking reggae covers, but under it all is a foundation of groove and warmth that keeps you moving forward. The sound has drawn comparisons to Paul Simon, Bill Withers and Ben Harper--surprising likenesses for an all-American college football player turned singer/songwriter. While his disarming lyrics and singable melodies display a rare sensitivity, the intensity of his live performances - solo or backed by the raucous Clubhouse Band - hint at his gridiron past.
Tennis' charming authenticity and powerful groove have endeared him to fans at home and abroad, and with a dogged DIY mentality the last two years have seen him orchestrate successful tours through Switzerland, Germany, The Netherlands, Austria, Ireland, Colombia, and Argentina.
Stateside, Tennis has an ever-expanding regional tour schedule revolving around his home city of Philadelphia. He has opened for Grammy Winners Kenny Loggins and Shawn Colvin, performed at the Philadelphia Folk Festival and Falcon Ridge’s “Emerging Artist Showcase,” and shared the stage with folk legends Ellis Paul and Jonatha Brook. He’s appeared on NBC’s The 10! Show and 6abc’s Tuned in, and has become a regular on Philadelphia independent radio. In 2010, Tennis emerged atop more than 600 entrants in the Philadelphia Songwriters Project Contest, and was nominated as Philadelphia’s singer/songwriter of the year by both Origivation Magazine and WSTW’s Hometown Heroes.
Perhaps his proudest achievement is his “Clubhouse Concerts,” a warmly welcoming monthly series at his home in South Philly, which Tennis hosts, curates, and performs at. Touring favorites like El Caribefunk, Devon Sproule, Barnaby Bright, Carsie Blanton, the Gold Magnolias, Mieka Pauley and the West Philadelphia Orchestra have graced the stage, and some of Philly’s finest players are likely to show up for jam sessions that routinely go until 3 in the morning.
Content ©2011-2012 Ryan Tennis. Website by Jesse Gimbel.