Red Deer singer Ryan Langlois has a new locally-produced CD, It Was A Song, coming out May 31. (Contributed image).

Red Deer singer/songwriter embraces optimism, releases a hopeful new album

Ryan Langlois puts $75,000 career development prize to good use

Red Deer singer/songwriter Ryan Langlois is in a better head space these days — and that’s translating into a more hopeful tone on his first full-band album as a solo artist.

It Was A Song, which will be released to music stores and online music providers Friday, is about the power of music — and dreams.

Langlois, who won the second-place, $75,000 career development prize from the Project Wild Alberta Music competition last fall, has been open about his battle with depression and anxiety.

And he admits his last acoustic album was “very introspective and melancholy.”

Since he’s been feeling a lot better lately, Langlois said, “I wanted to introduce some colour, joy and smiling into this collection of songs.”

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The title track pays homage to his hometown of Pierceland, Sask. Langlois was honoured to be asked last spring to give the graduation commencement speech at his old high school.

He said he tried to encourage the grads with a message of believing in themselves and the power of their dreams: “No matter where you are from, you can do anything!”

Being back where he grew up got him thinking about how much that village helped shape him — even though “at the time, all I wanted to do was leave.”

Langlois believes a lot of people will be able to relate to this song, because “I think we all have a town, city, college we can say that about…”

His new CD was recorded at Melodious Design Studio in Red Deer, and produced and engineered by Heath West.

It will be officially released at Bo’s Bar and Stage in Red Deer at an 8 p.m. concert on June 6 by Langlois and special guest Maddison Krebs.

Langlois is then embarking on a series of shows across the province, including a stop in Lethbridge on June 14, at the Beaumont Blues and Roots Festival on June 22, and the Calgary Stampede’s Coke Stage on July 10.

More dates and information will be posted to his website.

Langlois hopes listeners will react to his album “by saying ‘Wow! I’m not sure where exactly this fits (among musical genres) but it’s really good.’”

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