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Raised By Wolves

Musician Ryan Whitewolf channels universal rhythms to reconnect us to all that is truly important, writes Tony Stanton.

Images: Mirza Nurman

If a great singing voice is God-given, Ryan Whitewolf must have some pretty powerful friends.

With a repertoire that connects – or reconnects – us to the natural rhythms of the planet, Ryan’s voice is a direct reminder of the power of nature, and the power of music to heal our discontented souls.

Ryan sings like an angel sent to remind us what we have long forgotten: that we live in a spiritual and earthly realm that should above all else be respected.

His journey has not been an easy one. Fostered at six weeks old into an Australian family with ties to indigenous cultures, he was instilled with the songlines of ancient worlds from a young age, prompting him to be inspired and learn from indigenous elders in Australia and around the world during a period of soul searching in his late teens and 20s.

“I explored the wonders of nature with different elders,” he says, “from the wilderness of North-American parks and the depth of Amazonian jungles to the aridity of Mexican and Australian deserts, learning to play instruments, and singing and writing lyrics about and for the earth.”

He hit the road too as a travelling musician: a young man with a tent and a guitar, and little else.

“I’d learnt to play music as a kid, and would dedicate up to twelve hours a day to master my craft. In my late teens, I pursued my soul-searching journey around the world with just one bag and a tent, street-performing in hundreds of unknown towns and facing everything I was afraid of.”

Inevitably he was ‘discovered’ by the music industry in LA, but the experience only served to further his resolve to create music that spoke from his heart about the purity of Mother Nature.

“I met with big time songwriters and producers for whom hitting billions of views on YouTube was a daily occurrence. They admitted they knew everything about algorithms, melodies and arrangements to control people’s minds, but didn’t even like the music they made. I chose to not compromise integrity for money or fame and declined their label’s offer to represent me.”

Ryan sees music as an expression of feelings that are way more powerful than simple entertainment.

“Too many of the lyrics in modern music rely on the objectification of the feminine. Those songs are actually deep programs and layers separating us and creating suffering. Where are the morals, where are our standards? We’ve got to wake up and remember how we used to honor women, along with the mother of all, the Earth.”

His feelings run as deep for indigenous people around the world.

“The perception of tribes by modern society as “savages” is utterly wrong: they are the ones who have maintained ancient wisdom. A lot of us are lost in today’s society. People are going back and forth thinking they know what is going on, but generally they have no clue.

“We live in a society where we have an attachment to comfort. It comes from a sense of control; we get comfortable in our bubble. How are we supposed to grow like that? Let’s push our edges. Question everything.”

Follow Ryan on Instagram: @whitewolfmusica

Listen to Ryan on Spotify here