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Articles Home » Music Talk » AdapterAdapter Interview with Nick Ryder
AdapterAdapter Interview with Nick Ryder


Interview with Nick Ryder

By Nina McCarthy, Sr. Music Journalist

Boston Rock Radio



Out of Attleboro, MA hails the independent bluesy, rock duo AdapterAdapter.  I've followed them and booked them several times since the first self-titled release in 2014.  AdapterAdapter is a must see live band to believe it's only a duo, and occasionally a solo, by Nick.  I bet you won't be able to sit still!



BRR:  For those not familiar with AdapterAdapter, can you give me a little history of the band?


This is kind of a strange story; I had been wanting to play harmonica in a band for a couple years but was having a hard time finding anyone to play with consistently. At the beginning of 2014 I was listening to a lot of Captain Beefheart’s music and started to get the notion that he was somehow trying to tell me something from beyond the grave. I wasn’t really the kind of person to read into signs too much, but I remember this one struck me in an unusual way. Anyway, the band name he gave me was AdapterAdapter, which is a lyric from his song “Dropout Boogie.” I didn’t really like the name or have any band members lined up, but after telling a friend of my strange occurrence, he said it was a cool name and I should run with it. So I put an ad on Facebook that I had a band and I was looking for shows, even though I didn’t actually have one yet. It only took a few minutes for me to get my first show offer, which was only about a week away. I took it, and everything started to fall into to place very quickly. Within about two months we already had our first CD out on Ukulele Horror Records and I have been gigging and releasing music steadily ever since.


BRR:  AdapterAdapter is very unique, first of all being a duo, and secondly with the bluesy rock sound and use of the harmonica.  What made you decide on this genre?


Well I come from a metal and punk background really, but upon discovering Fat Possum Records one week when I was a bit younger, I seemed to change my tune overnight. I remember getting a few albums from that label and within days I was telling people I wanted to be in a two man blues band, even though I was still playing death metal at the time. My friend’s mom gave me my first harp a couple years later and I was just naturally better at it than I had been at almost any instrument I tried, so it kind of became my main thing. I still have a lot of punk/metal influence, which I think sets us apart from any other band with a harmonica as a lead instrument.


BRR:  Do you find it challenging with just yourself and a drummer?


Yes and no. Initially I figured I would get a full band so I could just play harp and sing. I wasn’t really comfortable on guitar when I started, as it had never been my main instrument, and I was also not used to having to do all my harmonica parts hands free and sing. It was a lot to try and do at first and I mostly wanted a guitarist, but having just me and a drummer made it really easy to coordinate and play a lot of gigs right from the start. I kind of decided to just keep it that way unless I met anyone else I actually wanted to add to the band. Initially people thought we should get a bassist, but I just started working on my guitar tone a lot and have rarely heard any complaints on the lack of bass since. People often tell me we sound like we have more guys and some clubs book us thinking there will be more members showing up based on what they’ve listened to.


BRR:  Speaking of drummer, you currently are in need of one, correct?  


Indeed I am. I have managed to find people to play with and other solutions for my last bunch of shows, but essentially it’s been just me since last September. Anyone who is interested just hit me up.


BRR:  You have played solo without one? Do you think you'll continue to do so?


I’ve done a few shows by myself, which was nerve wracking at first but now I actually like doing it. I have been working on ways to make playing by myself more interesting for me and the crowd. This way if I don’t find a full time drummer soon, I won’t be held back from playing shows.


BRR:  I know you have a new album coming out.  What is the release date and what can you tell me about the album?


Well it came out digitally in November, but the 7 inch version will be coming out on February 7th. It’s actually a double-A-sided single, not a full album. Since we have a few CDs out already, I wanted to do something totally different this time around. The record itself will be very unique, pressed on clear squares of lathe-cut plexiglass instead of traditional round vinyl.


Nick Ryder- Guitar/Bass/Vocals/Blues Harp
Greg Valade- Drums/Smoke
Kyle Anderson- Recording/Mixing/Mastering/Tambourine



BRR:  We’ve been playing “Rocket Blaster” and “Son of Dracula” on BRR for a little bit now.  What is on the new album?


Those are our two newest recorded songs and they are probably my favorite songs that we’ve released. I didn’t wanna put one over the other so I decided to call them both A sides.


BRR:  Can you tell me about a little about the songs and the inspiration behind them?


I think these tracks have a different level of energy and aggression to them than a lot of our older repertoire. I’ve definitely been moving in a slightly darker direction since these songs came out. A lot of my songs are inspired by events in my own life, but mixed with references to horror/sci-fi/satan. A lot of my songs are more personal than they may actually seem.


BRR:  Do you have plans for a release show?


February 7th at Alchemy in Providence, RI! It should be a good bill, we are playing with our friends Crushed Vinyl, as well as Hombres Del Mar and Opium Droid. We’ll also have some other exclusive new merch available at the show.


BRR:  What's your future goals for AdapterAdapter? Any touring plans?


Actually, touring and playing shows is pretty much my only goal! I love playing live and being on the road. We have done a couple tours so far but I definitely still wanna go to more new places. I am actually working on booking some dates for a mini-tour this summer. I’m trying to keep it kind of small at the moment just in case I do end up having to hit the road by myself, but I’m not gonna let that hold me back.


BRR:  Nice! Is there anything else you'd like to add?


Thanks to you Nina, for being one of our longest running supporters at this point! And to Wayne and Boston Rock Radio for playing our stuff!


(Photos courtesy of AdapterAdapter )






Upcoming Shows:
Feb 07        Alchemy  Providence, RI
Mar 07        Dusk        Providence, RI
Jun 16        Dusk        Providence, RI

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