The names Eminem, 2-Pac, Nas, Biggie Smalls, among others are household names to fans of hip-hop and rap. All of these men have made a difference one way or another, inspiring many along their careers. Up and coming artist Ryan Bronson is looking to add his name to that list with his work as a musician and efforts as an advocate for mental health.
Who is Ryan Bronson in the first place? As he would describe himself, an artist that wants to bring real style hip-hop back and to be given the ability to be able to bring motivation through lyrics. Allowing people to relate and overcome through his music is what Bronson is all about.
From a young age music was more than a welcomed aspect of Bronson’s life. Like so many others his taste in music had been initially molded by his parents, in particular his father. This included being tested on his knowledge of artists and songs during their many road trips, consisting of 80’s hair bands his father had grown to love. As a love for music was born so was the beginning of a career. As he grew so did Bronson’s taste in music.
“If you listen to country or pop music you don’t hear people relating or saying lyrics that are fully relatable unless they are catchy as hell. Where as with hip-hop you can say really anything you want and there is going to be at least one person out there that listens and relates to it,” Bronson explained.
It was not until his freshman year that Bronson put his dreams into motion. The thought that he could potentially spend the rest of his life at a job he hated never sat well with him. Combined with his fathers advice to tackle his dreams and desires head on, a career was born. “Why not go after it, and if I fail I fail,” he stated.
Though his music career is still young, Bronson has definitely seen his share of success thus far. Most notably, Bronson was trending in the top 100 on ITunes for hip-hop for his work on the album Misunderstood. Beyond simply the success of his album, he notes that what truly drives him and has made it all worth it has been the role his fans have played. For him it is the little things that count. Having opened concerts for many artists, most notably Wiz Khalifa in the past, he explains that many of the people he performs for aren’t there for him though those that are mean everything.
“Even though there have been a few small shows and have been on tours, I have opened for people so a lot of them (fans) aren’t there for me. But the dopest thing is I have been to those show with other artists and I see a handful of my die-hard fans in the front singing along to the lyrics with me, that’s surreal.”
What makes Ryan Bronson special however goes beyond the shows and arguably beyond simply the music. What sets him apart is the message he is trying to send and the meaning behind each and every lyric and performance he gives. Being an artist to him is about more than just the music, it is about using this stage to give back and reach even one person if he can. With that stage Bronson is seeking to be an advocate and raise awareness for mental health, a cause he is extremely passionate about. From losing his grandfather to Alzheimer’s dementia and having his own personal battles with depression and mental health, Bronson understands the importance of speaking about this cause.
“If you do suffer from anxiety or depression there is help out there, find something you can relate to and indulge your time in that. No matter what you are going through it will get better, it will pass, and you will be strong enough to fight through it,” he explained.
This message is present in not only in his lyrics but in his actions as well. In his most notable album Misunderstood, Bronson dives into his darker side, channeling his emotions and battle with mental health into the album. As his own lyricists everything he puts out is one hundred percent real and meaningful, hoping that by revealing more of himself he can make a positive impact on even one listener. Going beyond the lyrics, a dollar from each of his past two albums pre-orders was donated to the Anxiety and Depression Organization of America while his upcoming project will also include donations to the Alzheimer’s foundation.
In a day and age when mental health awareness is becoming a bigger and more talked about issue, an unlikely advocate in Ryan Bronson is making his voice heard. Crafting his own path as a hip-hop arsist Bronson’s music on real issues such as mental health is rare in the field that he performs. A topic many of the greats such as Eminem, Nas, 2-Pac, and so many others have strayed away from, Bronson is tackling the issues head on like no other. As he said it best, he is simply trying to be, “influential,” and change the wolrd the way that he knows best.