In association with Open House Festival
Raised on the banks of the Rock River in northern Illinois isn’t a bad place for a musician’s story to start, though Ryley Walker’s career didn’t start to take-off until he moved to Chicago and began playing shows at the age of 17 in 2007.
After a reinvention, of sorts, in 2011 and a bike accident in 2012, Walker became much more disciplined to his craft and the seeds for what was to follow would be sewn. A majestic player in the vein of Bert Jansch and Nick Drake, Walker carves beautifully romantic songs out of the scraps of inspiration he finds.
With nods to 70s British folk music and more recent alt-country leanings of his home country, his beautiful 2015 record Primrose Green was an experimental and wonderfully crafted collection that seemed to stem from someone far richer in years than the young troubadour.
Musically raw and lyrically affecting, Ryley Walker comes across as some throw-back to a long-forgotten age; a bruised and somewhat battered character but one who comes alive with a guitar in his arms.