David Ryan Harris / Jeff Leblanc
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Singer-songwriter David Ryan Harris has been challenging mainstream notions of African American performers since fronting the Atlanta-based rock group Follow for Now in the late ‘80s. His subsequent solo work has ranged from folk to R&B. Since releasing his eponymous debut album on Brendan O’Brien’s Columbia imprint in 1997, Harris has released Soulstice (2003) and The Bittersweet (2006). He has also worked with several well-known artists, including Dave Matthews, Cassandra Wilson, Derek Trucks, Carlos Santana, Marc Broussard, Guy Sebastian, and John Mayer.
Harris counts Son House, Robert Johnson, Prince, Parliament/Funkadelic, and Stevie Wonder among his influences. He says that these sources of inspiration helped him “to understand that music could not and should not be limited by our often narrow views of what it should be.”