Who Is Ren?
If you live in the United Kingdom, you may have heard singer-songwriter Ren’s debut single, “My Heart Belongs To Ireland,” on the radio.
It’s one of five songs included on his debut E.P., “A Calling From the Shore,” released on February 24.
If you aren’t yet familiar with Ren and his contemporary alt folk brand of music, sit down with his new E.P. and be prepared to feel things. Drawing from inspirations such as John Martyn, Dick Gaughan, and James Taylor, Ren pairs warm, laid back melodies with powerful vocals and intricate storytelling that transports you out of your world and into his.
Let Ren tell you a little about it…
From the opening to the closing notes of the E.P., “A Calling From the Shore” takes you along on a physical and emotional journey through Europe and deeply personal exploration. While “My Heart Belongs To Ireland” and “The Coast,” both already released as singles, are sure to be fan favorites, the standout on the E.P. for me is All That I Need, which I kept playing on repeat. It has a vocal that’s a little more angry, a little more forceful than on the other songs and tells a vivid story about a woman trying to find the strength to leave a relationship.
Ren has a fun back story that likely won’t surprise you after you listen to “A Calling From the Shore.” According to his website, renofficialmusic.com, he spent years traveling throughout Europe and living out of his van, which he named Penelope Sunshine. Throughout his debut E.P., you can feel the influence of a life on the road and the self-discovery that accompanied it.
Give Ren’s debut E.P. a listen and let us know what you think in the comments. He’s also in the middle of a European tour, so visit his website for a show near you. Although Penelope Sunshine will likely have to stay behind, I’ll be waiting for him to head over to the United States some day.
Janet lives in the United States and developed an obsession with music while growing up in the neon age of pop – the 1980s.
Now, hundreds of concerts and mix tapes later, she is an avid record and music memorabilia collector and creator of Into the Groove, a blog that celebrates 80s music one song at a time. Check out her feature ’80s Song Of The Day’.
Follow her on Twitter @80sgrooveblog.