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Sam Ryder

Sam Ryder is an English singer/songwriter and social media personality who began his career in the hard rock and metal circuits, fronting groups like the Morning After and Blessed by a Broken Heart before starting a solo career as a pop artist. Wielding his versatile and dynamic vocal range, he parlayed an unexpected bout of viral success into a major-label deal and debuted in early 2021 with powerful pop-driven singles like "Whirlwind" and "More." They were included on his first EP, The Sun's Gonna Rise, before the end of the year. 2022 was a landmark year in Ryder's career which brought him both a runner-up spot at the Eurovision Song Contest and a U.K. number two placing for his co-composition "Space Man." Raised in Essex, Ryder grew up admiring the vocal power and range of English rock titans like Freddie Mercury and Iron Maiden's Bruce Dickinson. He taught himself to play guitar, but it was his impressive voice that became his ticket into the music industry. After recording a couple of albums with symphonic metal band the Morning After, he was recruited by Canadian glam metal outfit Blessed by a Broken Heart to become their frontman. He was a key part of the band's 2012 LP Feel the Power, and after parting ways in 2013 he tried his luck in Nashville, writing songs and pitching himself to labels. He even recorded a 2016 full-length that never saw the light of day. During the COVID-19 lockdown of 2020, he casually tried a more spontaneous route, posting short a cappella videos of himself singing hit songs on the Internet. Drawn in by his soulful powerhouse voice, he soon developed a following and was signed by Parlophone, which issued his debut single, "Whirlwind," in early 2021. Against atmospheric backdrops, additional singles like "Tiny Riots" and "More" combined his hard rock chops with pop hooks. These songs and more were collected on the EP The Sun's Gonna Rise in September 2021. Ryder's career enjoyed a significant boost when he was handed the opportunity to represent the U.K. at the 2022 Eurovision Song Contest. His song "Space Man" -- co-written with Amy Wadge and Max Wolfgang -- finished second in the competition, giving the U.K. their best result at the ceremony since 1998. Subsequently, the track hit number two in the U.K. singles chart, and reached the Top 30 in eight other territories. He followed this success with the August 2022 single "Somebody" and both these tracks ultimately appeared on his debut solo album, There's Nothing But Space, Man!, that November.
© Timothy Monger /TiVo

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