'Crazy Heart' to Depression, Ryan Bingham Is More Than an Oscar® Winner
By Tamara Conniff
July 09, 2010
Ryan Bingham has had a circus ride of a year. He picked up the best song Golden Globe® and Oscar® for writing "The Weary Kind" from the film Crazy Heart. He describes the six-month award season, from nominations to ceremony, as "surreal" madness. "It was like being on another planet," he adds with a laugh. "It was exciting and shocking that we won." An Oscar certainly puts a musician on the map, but Ryan's not new to the business. A former bull rider, Ryan points out that you can't write a bull half-assed, so he left the rodeo to pursue music years ago. Ryan and his band the Dead Horses have already released two critically acclaimed albums on Lost Highway Records, with a third, Junky Star, due out September 7. Why Junky Star? "I don't really know what that means," he says, taking a beat before continuing. "Yeah, I do. It means 'rough around the edges.' It's an imperfect star."
Ryan asked 10-time Grammy®-winning producer/musician T-Bone Burnett, who also produced the music for Crazy Heart, to help him on "Junky Star."
"T-Bone is amazing," Ryan says. "He listened to the songs. Liked what he heard. We went into the studio and cut the album in three days."
Right now, Ryan is performing in select private shows to spread word of mouth around the new album's release, and in September he hits the road opening for Willie Nelson.
"Willie Nelson," he exclaims. "I can hardly wait!"