Arts & Entertainment

Profile: KU Alum Ryan Scanlon Talks About His Music Career

By Jenny Wallace
Arts & Entertainment Editor

Ryan Scanlon graduated from KU’s cinema, television, and media program last spring. Since then, Scanlon has been keeping busy by writing and producing songs on streaming sites like Apple Music and Spotify.

Since the COVID-19 pandemic ended the spring semester early, Scanlon had to keep himself busy and try his best to make the most of an unfortunate situation. He spent the beginning of the year working for the Today Show.

“I was on an internship [at the] beginning of the year, Scanlon said. “(I) set up a stage for an interview with the Korean pop band BTS … that ended up being canceled due to the pandemic.”

Since the pandemic cancelled Scanlon’s plans, he was forced to find something new to do with his time. Already having experience with music, as Scanlon sang tenor in KU’s Kutztones, he decided to use quarantine to take music more seriously. 

“I’ve always been passionate about music,” Scanlon said. “I just didn’t have the time to really get into it. When the pandemic hit, I lost my internship. (I) decided to just jump in and see what I could do. While being kind of a bummer overall, I made the best of the situation and tried to push myself in a new direction.”

Since Scanlon has dedicated more time to music, he has grown a larger fanbase as well. As a verified artist with over 100 monthly listeners, he’s growing in popularity by the day. He’s released 5 different songs on multiple streaming sites and gained exposure by entering a contest hosted by Futuristic.

“I got some recognition from him and got placed on a few of his editorial playlists on Spotify,” Scanlon said. “I’m just doing my best to keep busy and find opportunities to get myself moving.”

Although the world is still dealing with COVID-19 restrictions, the added free time has given Scanlon an opportunity to progress his music career and build a following. Now collaborating with artists from across the country, Scanlon has an upcoming release.

“I am releasing a two-track EP, “Philly Pack,” on October tenth and working on another larger five-track EP that I’d like to release sometime this winter,” Scanlan said. …”It’s cool to see people enjoying my music, and I want to be able to take a step forward and come more out of my shell.”

Scanlan added that when the pandemic finally ends, he plans on performing his music before a live audience.

Listen to Scanlon on Spotify.