Ryan Boldt
Ryan Boldt

Music

Broadside Ballads

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About Ryan Boldt

Boldt is the lead singer and songwriter in The Deep Dark Woods, crafting beautiful, intimate songs that are steeped in traditions found in places like English folk music, country blues, and 60s R&B. He was born on the vast prairie, in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, but moved to Chemainus, BC when he was 19, where he started writing songs. It’s worth noting that the name Chemainus comes from the native shaman and prophet Tsa-meeun-is, which means ‘broken chest.’ The legend says that the prophet survived a massive wound in his chest to become a powerful chief. And while people often equate the music of The Deep Dark Woods with a prairie sound, it was in Chemainus that Boldt truly cracked open his chest to bleed out his first songs. Then, in the summer of 2005, Boldt moved back to Saskatoon to form The Deep Dark Woods; a band that recently marked its 10th anniversary.

Boldt’s living in Victoria these days, having just completed a new solo project called ‘Broadside Ballads,’ which finds him continuing to dig through the past to create spellbinding music for the present. He’s driven by influences like Shirley Collins, Ian and Sylvia Tyson, Bob Dylan, and The Stanley Brothers, but even as he mines the past, he’s not trying to contemporize these sounds. He just happens to be making newly recorded music in the same vein, the way they used to make it, before the world got so fast and cluttered. Warm. Intimate. Haunting. Like a punch to the gut. With a stunning, heart-stopping simplicity that cuts to the core of a person.