Ryan Roth @ Martini & Nuzzi’s

Ryan Roth and His Suitcase Full of Surprises

The GlassCity419 crew was invited to visit the new Martini & Nuzzi’s location at 329 N.Huron St to check out the venue and a couple of performances. Not being the type to disappoint, we gladly obliged.

Listen, let’s get this straight. I am always skeptical about stuff like this. People are always trying to bring you out to an “awesome new bar” where their friend’s “awesome band” is playing and it is rarely ever “awesome”. I usually end up drinking more than listening to the band and I end up leaving early with some sort of cat or wife related excuse. This was not one of those nights.

We began the short walk from our GC419 office, at the Secor Building, and arrive around 8:30pm. Max Boyle, a young looking 19 year old, was onstage. This kid… Once his confidence built up… Wow! The guy is good. His voice is smooth and… Well, you just got to see him for yourself. We’ll write another review on him later. He’s going to be one to watch though. Anyway, on to Ryan Roth.

Ryan Roth is our GlassCity419.com featured Musician this month and quickly becoming a friend of ours. He’s just that type of guy. Super nice, unassuming and a remarkably talented musician. Take a second to check out a couple videos we recorded of him in our studio here. Come right back though, I’ve got some stuff to tell ya. If you’ve never experienced a Ryan Roth performance, you are in for a ride.

A suitcase kick drum and a tambourine are sitting onstage and I immediately started to make assumptions about what we were about to hear. I had heard Ryan play at our Website Launch Party but I wasn’t able to sit down and watch. I wasn’t sure what I was getting into. My assumptions were dead wrong but still right in a way. Part of Roth’s sound is based on Bluegrass but with a rock performance style. He’s playing a tambourine with his right foot, suitcase kick drum with his left, an acoustic guitar in his lap and singing. Dexterity and coordination like a mofo! It’s definitely something to see. I’m a hip hop/electronic/ indie rock type of dude. I couldn’t tell the name of very many songs he was performing until… part way through the set he broke out in a medley of classic hip hop songs from the late 80s and early 90s but in a Bluegrass tempo and sound. He played the crap out of every single one! It was attention grabbing to say the least. Snoop Dogg, Public Enemy, Digital Underground and Slick Rick (many more) songs with a Bluegrass feel? DOPE! Seriously! He had people singing along and dancing. The energy in which he played them could only come from someone who appreciated them as classic pieces of American music. I got a chance to chat with him a bit and found out that he was a well rounded music lover (as most musicians are). He broke down his musical background and influences with us in our studio. He describes his act as “a train wreck waiting to happen” but I see it more like watching an old rail relic that has been restored to it’s former glory with a few graffiti pieces on it’s back end. I was thoroughly impressed and had a blast. While I did get some drinking in, there wasn’t a time where I wasn’t glued to Ryan Roth’s stage presence and he set the tone for the rest of the night. I wasn’t making any excuses to leave and we actually ended up closing the bar that night.


-Greg Lukasik