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Here She Comes

Sydney Irving is Way Ahead of Schedule

At 17, New York native Sydney Irving may only be in the early years of her music career, but she has already been named the 2020 young adult artist of the year by the prestigious International Singer Songwriters Association.

Similar to other contemporary artists, Irving writes songs that mean a lot to her and that she hopes will resonate with others as well. Taylor Swift was her early inspiration, but her current hero is Tom Petty.

“I think it is just the way they can write a song about their lives and what they are going through,” Irving says, “and you can connect with it immediately.”

Her musical influences also include artists like Barns Courtney, Post Malone, Ronnie James Dio, The Doors and, perhaps not surprisingly, bad boy Ryan Adams, who actually recorded his own tribute to Swift’s entire album, 1989, covering the entire album.

Once she got to playing and writing herself, Irving didn’t look back. At only 14, her debut album, “Hello Stranger”, was released. This was soon followed by her sophomore album “The Halfmoon Sessions” in 2018. In December 2019, Irving released two EPs; “The Greene EP”, a live compilation of previously released songs, recorded in a log cabin located in upstate NY with Tom Finn and Steve Sopchak and “The Ronan EP” with Sydney Irving & The Mojo. She is currently looking forward to releasing her 5th studio album, coming in 2020.

Irving has been fortunate to have had the opportunity to be direct support for Starship featuring Mickey Thomas at the 2019 Spiedie Fest in Binghamton, NY and perform at the 2019 Dio Day event in Cortland, NY. Later that year, Sydney attended a Barns Courtney concert. She had the chance to meet him before the show and then during the show, Courtney called her up on stage to sing his hit song “You & I” with him! She has also had the privilege to open for artists like Matt Rogers and Mikele Buck as well as be the youngest artist to have a residency at the largest casino in New York State.

Sydney Irving, who has been nominated for best singer/songwriter at the Syracuse Area Music Awards three times, has been writing songs since she was twelve with her guitar. Sydney is a proud Breedlove Guitar endorsed artist and has played Breedlove guitars ever since receiving her Breedlove Passport-12 string at the age of 13. Along with being nominated for 2020 Female Artist of the Year by Music Mafia Radio, now at 17 years old, she is gearing up to release her fifth studio album, “Relax With Fiends” which is set to be released in December 2020. With a fresh, indie rock sound, Irving is following her dreams of pursuing music.

Follow Sydney for more information about upcoming shows and music on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and Youtube or check out her music on iTunes, Amazon Music, Spotify, or her website www.sydneyirvingmusic.com.

Chuck Schiele: Hi Sydney, Thank you for doing this article for Table Hopping.

Sydney Irving: Hey Chuck! Thank you so much for letting me be apart of this!

CS: Tell us all about how you got started in music?

SI: I got my first guitar ever for my ninth birthday and started lessons shortly after with the one and only, Loren Kryzkowski. I discovered people like Taylor Swift and Tom Petty, finding inspiration in their lyrics and melodies.

CS: Please characterize your music.

SI: My early roots were more folk driven, centered around just acoustic guitar. Over time, it has transformed into more of an indie rock sound.

CS: I see you’ve released several videos. How’s all that going?

SI: I love making and releasing music videos. I am lucky enough to get to work with a bunch of really great people, with help from my management Grace Musicians Group. We are working on mastering the art of music video making. We release the videos onto Facebook and Youtube. My newest one is for my newest release “What Have You Done”.

CS: What does being a songwriter mean to you?

SI: Songwriting is a big part of who I am. It helps me try to make sense of things.

CS: Where do you find your inspiration to write?

SI: Physically, I find inspiration on my bedroom floor. That’s where I write the majority of my songs.

CS:What are some of the highlights in your music path, so far?

SI: I am so thankful for all opportunities! Some of my favorite memories include being direct support of Starship featuring Mickey Thomas at the 2019 Spiedie Fest and performing at the 2019 Dio Day event in Cortland, NY. In 2019, I also attended a Barns Courtney concert and got the chance to meet him before the show. During the show, he called me up on stage to sing his incredible song, “You and I” with him. All the venues I have had the opportunity to play at are wonderful. One that stands out is the Turning Stone Casino. I am also a proud Breeedlove Guitar endorsed artist. I have been able to play with some really amazing musicians in the band as well. Sydney Irving & The Mojo includes Randy Tennant, Evan Tennant, and Luke Hart. All are so beyond talented and cool! This year I was honored to have won Best young adult artist of the year at the 2020 International Singer Songwriters Association Awards as well as be nominated for the Music Mafia Radio 2020 Female Artist of the year.

CS: Anything ever happen, say…. on a gig that didn’t go quite as expected Got any funny stories?

SI: One time, when I was about 14, I was playing and a young guy must have thought I was older than I was. He bought me a hard apple cider. Fortunately, my parents were there and caught it. I think my grandma ended up drinking it.

CS: How’s the Central NY music scene treating you, so far?

SI: I love Central New York. Everyone is so awesome! I feel like I have a great support system and I hope it keeps growing.

CS: Please tell us what’s in the future for Sydney Irving and her music?

SI: I am currently working on promoting my brand new EP, which is set to drop in December. I have released two singles so far, “Rain” and “What Have You Done” along with music videos. You can check out both songs on itunes and amazon music. We also released both on limited edition cd single; hand signed and numbered. There are only 100 available. We have been so fortunate to have also gotten radio play on 95X, Soundcheck on The Rebel as well as Music Mafia Radio; Thank you to Scott Dixon, Dave Frisina, and Scott Stephenson.

CS: How do we keep in touch with you and your music?

SI: You can check me out on social media: facebook, instagram, twitter, and youtube or my website, sydneyirvingmusic.com. You can find all my upcoming shows there as well. I have been very fortunate to have booked heavily into 2021 so there is good news on the horizon.

CS: Thank you, Sydney. Keep working hard. You’re ahead of schedule.

SI: Thank you so much. You are very kind.

Chuck Schiele
Chuck Schiele is a lifelong, award-winning musician, art director, producer, editorialist, artist, activist, member Quatrocollective.com and fan of the CNY music scene. To be considered for this column, please write chuck.schiele@gmail.com.