For the record, my name is Kathryn Juliana Kempthorn, but I release music under the name Rynn.
I was born in Canton, Ohio but am currently living in Los Angeles. My favorite color is lavender, my favorite place on earth is the forest, and I have a standard poodle names Mazie who I love more than most things in this world.
I guess if we start from the very beginning I have always loved music. My mom tells me that I started singing before I started talking. I started in “kinder music” classes as a preschooler, and piano lessons at age 5. There has always been a spark in me that has wanted to create music rather than just play and listen to music that already exists. I have very vivid memories of my extremely strict, Russian, piano teach passionately screaming, “YOU KILLING ME,” because I would add my own stylistic twist on whatever piece of music I was learning. She said, “one day you can write music the way you want to write it, but right now you have to play Bach the way Back wrote it.” I really took that idea to heart, as I was always coming up with mini songs I was making up on the piano, as well taking songs I knew and replacing the words that were written with my own.
When I got to junior high I had more of an interest to play modern music than just classical, so I picked up the acoustic guitar and learned my first song, Love Story, by Taylor Swift. During this time, MySpace was at it’s prime. There was a decently big local music scene within the high schools in my hometown. All of these bands were on Myspace and would play shows every weekend at local churches in the area. This opened up the idea that if they could write and record their own music and put it up on the internet for people to listen to, why couldn’t I do that too? At the time I was absolute terrified of anyone hearing me sing. I would wait until I knew everyone in the house was asleep, and then climb out my bedroom and bring my guitar on the roof, (because that’s where I thought no one would be able to hear me) and started trying to write songs.
My sophomore year of high school I bought an Alesis Micron synthesizer and a copy of the recording software, Logic and started teaching myself to produce the songs I was writing. There was also a coffee shop, Muggzwigs, in my hometown that would have open mic night every Tuesday where eventually I started to play acoustic covers, as well as the songs I was writing. I had caught the songwriting bug and couldn’t stop writing.
When it was time for collage, Nashville was the only option in my brain. I applied to and got into Belmont University’s songwriting program where I double major in Music Business and Songwriting. I spent the next several years writing and writing and writing in my bedroom, by myself, trying to hone in on the sound I wanted to create. The fall of my senior year I spent a semester in Los Angeles. While I was there I took 5 songs that I had written and demoed as far as I could, money that I had saved up from years of Christmases, birthdays and babysitting, found a producer to help me finish these songs and create an EP.
When I returned back to Nashville for my last semester of school I was torn on what do following graduation. At that point I wasn’t sure if I should get a job on the business side of music, (as I had done tons of internships in music publishing, management, licensing while I was in school and getting a job was what most people did after graduation haha) and keep writing music on the side, OR if I should take the risk to really pursue the creative side of music full time. I ended up releasing my EP, Nightfires a week after I graduated and told myself I had a year to really go after the songwriter/artist thing and if after that first year if it was clear nothing was really rolling I would get a job on the business side.
Here we are almost three years later, still writing away.
Best known for her single “Islands,” which has been streamed on Spotify more than 8 million times, alt/dream-pop artist Rynn has been busy finishing her second EP which will come out early this year.
After graduating from Belmont University in Nashville in 2016, the Ohio-native released her debut EP Nightfires and moved to LA to continue writing. In addition to the rise of “Islands,” Rynn’s song "Talkin" took on a life of its own when the artist/DJ R3HAB discovered the song and released a dance version of it featuring Rynn’s vocals.
Since then, Rynn’s palette of sounds has continued to evolve. Last year her unique cover of Drake’s song “With You” became a fan favorite and she released two more songs, “Tokyo” and “In My Head,” from the upcoming EP. With press support from blogs like Kick Kick Snare and Dancing Astronaut and a packed show at The Study in Hollywood to kick off 2019, Rynn continues to build momentum as an independent artist — and its just the beginning.