John the Blind

As John the Blind, singer, songwriter, and producer John Ryan makes soulful electronic pop that balances low-key atmospheres and enlivening beats. Before releasing his debut EP, John the Blind, in 2019, he was well-established as a songwriter and producer for artists such as One Direction, Jason Derulo, and Rita Ora, including work on One Direction's final four albums. Born John Henry Ryan II in Pittsford, New York (in suburban Rochester), John Ryan graduated from McQuaid Jesuit High School in 2006 before enrolling at the Berklee College of Music in Boston. Some demos he recorded as a college student made their way to Family Affair Productions in Los Angeles, a production/songwriting company with alumni ties to Berklee. Ryan joined them upon graduating in 2010. He went to co-write hits for One Direction, including "Best Song Ever" and "Story of My Life," leading to a publishing deal with Big Deal Music/BMG Chrysalis US in 2013. While continuing to establish himself as hitmaking songwriter and producer, Ryan was the featured vocalist on Pitbull's 2014 single "Fireball," which he also co-wrote and co-produced. Songwriting collaborations for Maroon 5 ("Don't Wanna Know" featuring Kendrick Lamar), John Legend ("Love Me Now"), Walk the Moon, and Nick Jonas were among those that followed over the next couple of years, along with more songs for One Direction. After One Direction went on hiatus in 2016, Ryan contributed to solo albums by Niall Horan and Harry Styles. His writing and production credits in 2018 included Rita Ora's Phoenix, Clean Bandit's What Is Love?, and Jess Glynne's Always in Between, among other releases. In early 2019, Ryan made his performing debut as John the Blind with the self-produced, self-penned single "Two Months." He followed it that May with his first EP, John the Blind, on Atlantic Records. In the meantime, three songs he co-wrote for country-pop artist Maren Morris appeared on her 2019 album, Girl. ~ Marcy Donelson

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