Behind "Hard To Feel": An Interview With Kody Ryan


Written by Alexander Hume

The latest BSR release is an expression of the hardship in dealing with emotion. “Hard to Feel” is an electronic vocal-driven ballad that weaves in and out of somber introspective moods, echoing the familiar mantra and namesake of the track, “Hard to Feel”. Listening is as if the seasonal barometric pressure changes were transmuted into audio.The instrumental, also authored by Kody, oozes a sincere appreciation of electronic, rock, R&B, pop, and hip hop music. The production is both unique and catchy, perfectly carrying the sentiment of the introvertive song. Kody confidently flows from his striking, mournful singing to playful rapping, showing an impressive range. The track walks the line between catchy and interesting delicately, yet does so with a heartfelt conviction.

We talked to Kody about his background, new song, musical process, and future plans for his music. This upcoming artist is a sizzling caldera of talent that we believe will continue to grow in our local music scene and beyond.


What is your background and how did you start making music?

Kody: I’m from Covington [Washington], in the Kent area. As far as starting to make music, when I was 15 my grandma bought me a guitar- I had always liked music but grew up not really listening to it. When I got the guitar I was sucked into music, playing eight hours a day. I was kind of obsessed. From Led Zeppelin to Imogen Heap, all over the map. I started playing post hardcore, melodic heavy music. Then, I jumped from phase to phase and eventually I started songwriting. When I was introduced to Ableton by my mentor Steven, that changed the game for me and I’ve been on that ever since.


How did you link up with Big Slide for this track? How was the track made?

K: My mentor Steven Trueba, CANDLIGHT, told me that I would hit it off with Justin about two years ago. I knew he was incredibly good with that dancey vibe and I wanted him to remix the track- we ended up talking on the phone for awhile and Justin told me he wanted to put out the track [on Big Slide] and push us into another boundary. So I ended up linking up with him two weeks ago and met the crew and the Seattle community! It was just me on this one.

How did you get into the frame of mind to create the lyrics?

K: It came out of multiple things. As a writer I don’t want to be fake, I want to write things that are authentic to me. When Chester Bennington died, I felt this huge amount of sadness. He had so much, but was still numb. That’s kind of how the “Hard To Feel” came about. In a dark way it’s reminiscent of bad things that happen. I wrote the song one night, staying up composing on the piano in this emotional space.


What’s the next move?

K: This song is kind of a feeler track. I’d love to release music with Big Slide again though. I feel like the Seattle scene is amazing right now. I’m working on a three song EP kinda set in the fall to winter realm. It’s not super happy music either. [laughs]


We at BSR are extremely lucky to have worked with such a talented individual and look forward to seeing what Kody Ryan does in the future! 


Katelyn Wynecoop