[PREMIERE] Rynn: Tokyo
I was lucky enough to recently catch up with the wonderful Rynn to discuss her life and what’s changed. In her newest release – the elusive, empathetic “Tokyo”, Rynn lets us into her world on the other end of a trying time in many ways. Her telepathic relationship with director Emily Kretzer allowed the two of them to completely work in sync, a partnership that seems to be two creatives moving in unison. When asked about the inspirations for the video, Kretzer felt that the video “serves as an homage to all things Sofia Coppola - girlhood, solitude, and self-discovery.” The way it was shot was intentionally vintage to “capture both the reflective quality of the song’s lyrics and the general throwback-y nature of the treatment". Learn more about Rynn and check out the stunning video premiering below:
What is your creative process? When did you know the idea for 'Tokyo' was special?
My creative process usually is me, by myself, reflecting on and trying to tap into what emotions I’m going through in life. I usually open up notes on my phone and just let words flow. Then I open up logic, start messing around with different sounds, chords or beats and then I try singing some of the phrases I wrote over it. From there, I slowly piece together a song. Once I have the base production and feel for the song done myself, I send the stems to a different producer and we polish it up.
There was a long phase of time time when I was frustrated because I felt like I wasn’t really connecting with much of what I was writing. Once I took a step back, I realized this was because I had been avoiding what I was going through emotionally. I knew that I needed to write about what I experienced in Tokyo a few summers before. That was the darkest phase of my life but also a huge turning point for me. I sat down on the floor of my bedroom at my parents house in Ohio, and wrote down in a very literal way what I had experienced. That became most of the lyrics for Tokyo. I knew it was special because it was so personal. I hadn’t really talked to anyone much about what I experienced during that month away. But also looking back, that time in Tokyo was one of the most beautiful experiences in life. It is where I learned so much about myself and inwardly dealt with a lot of things I had buried for so long. I was able to bring it to light which allowed me to grow into a lot healthier and freer person today.
Your songs come from such a transparent place, what allows you to put such personal secrets on record?
In my day to day life, I’m not very in touch with my emotions. Even if no one heard any of these songs, writing is my way of internally processing and trying to figure out what I’m really feeling. When I write from a place that’s not that deep, I usually don’t feel connected to it enough to put on my own record.
What do you think the perfect Rynn song sounds like?
I’m continuously trying to figure that out and I think it’s also always evolving as I’m being inspired by different things. A staple from day one has been to create a sound that really takes the listener out of reality and into a dream world. Sonically I love experimenting with different sounds and synths and always try to add some elements that you wouldn’t necessarily expect. The perfect Rynn song would also make you want to move and dance in some type of way. I was a dancer growing up and connected so deeply with the music I would dance to. I would love for people to be inspired by my music this way as well.
Have you played 'Tokyo' live yet? How does it feel when you play your songs to fans in person?
I haven’t played Tokyo live yet, but I’m currently working on putting together a live show and really hope to do so within the next few months. Although I haven’t played it live yet, it seems a little scary because of its super honest subject matter. I won’t be able to hide behind a computer screen anymore! Haha.
This song sounds like it was written about one person in particular, do you think they've heard this song?
It was and I honestly have no clue. I haven’t really talked to this person since the day before I left for Tokyo, years ago. During that phase of life it felt like this person never took my music seriously and it was before I even launched the Rynn project. Part of me hopes they have heard it, almost so that I can prove them wrong in the fact that I can do this artist/writer thing. But it’s also kind of terrifying to think about if they have.
What's next for Rynn the artist?
I have several other songs that continue talking about this emotional journey I went on that summer after I got back from Tokyo. I’ll be releasing some of those songs as singles over the next few months, leading up to an EP early in the new year. As I mentioned before, I really hope to start playing shows and to translate the Rynn world into a live experience.
Who are you listening to right now?
I’ve been listening to a lot of singer/songwriter stuff lately, tons of Phoebe Bridgers, the new Kacey Musgraves album is GOLD from front to back, Noah Gundersen is always a favorite, and I’m also currently obsessed with anything from Day Wave.
Who's on your list of people you want to work with?
James Vincent McMorrow or Bon Iver are definitely dream collabs. I also think it would be really cool to do something with Kevin Garrett or Cautious Clay. They both inspire me a lot.
What's one thing you wish you've been asked in interviews before? Anything that we've all been missing that you want us to know?
Why are you so obsessed with unicorns?
Because who wouldn’t want to be a magical being?! You can work really really hard, but sometimes you’ve gotta make room for believing in the impossible being possible.
What would be your superpower?
Definitely teleporting. I want to live in too many places at once. I would love to be able to spend the morning with my friends at a coffee shop in Nashville, then teleport to LA to write and work on music in the afternoon, and then teleport to Ohio in time for a family dinner made by my mama.
What's the most *LA* thing you've seen in your time out there?
Probably when my whole street was taken over by trailers and a crew and turned into a film set. It was frustrating for a minute because I had to park so far away, but then it all became okay when I found out it was for one of my favorite TV shows, This Is Us.