Bryan Ruby is in “Baseball Country” Combining Two Life Passions

by Preshias Harris / 323 days ago / Comments
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New single out now, EP follows in the Fall

For Bryan Ruby, growing up in Montgomery County, Pennsylania, his twin passions were baseball and music.  When he wasn’t working at the family BBQ restaurant and listening to WXTU on the radio, he was hearing his dad’s kind of music as they drove to and from Bryan’s baseball games.

Away from the diamond, he interned for a while at 92.5 XTU, known as “Philadelphia’s Country Station”, before heading to Vassar College in the Hudson Valley on a vocal music scholarship and captaining the college’s baseball team to First Team All-Conference honors. He went on to play baseball professionally in the USA and overseas.

While still at college, Bryan won a songwriting contest – and a $5,000.00 prize – and the encouragement to continue developing his writing skills. 

During Country Radio Seminar (CRS) in March, I met up with Bryan Ruby to talk about his newly released song, “Baseball Country”, and the non-profit organization he has founded.

I told Bryan that I knew several singers and songwriters who had migrated to music from their original path to baseball.  I said there had to be a connection and I asked him: What’s your theory?

“I grew up playing baseball,” he said, “And baseball is a game where you fail a lot. Say you get a hit three out of ten times. Well, you still failed seven out of ten times but you’re considered a pretty good player.”

He said it’s a similar situation when it comes to writing songs. “We write so many songs that only a small percentage of them are actually good,” he admitted.   “Most of them I would never want to play for you!” 

But he can definitely see another connection between baseball and country music.

“If you’re ever at a ball game, listen to the music that’s being played on the loudspeakers at the stadium,” said Bryan.  “It’s usually country music. So, being a baseball player, I grew up with it.  I would bring my guitar with me on the road, on the team bus, all the time. I would play at the hotel and after the game.  There’s a lot of down time because we play at night and I would write songs during the day.  Now here we are years later and maybe I’m not a Major League Baseball player but I get to be a country singer, so that’s cool!”

Also pretty cool: Bryan Ruby has just released a new single, titled “Baseball Country.”

“It’s a co-write with two other writers, Chad Sellers from Iowa and Shane David Smith who’s a great guitarist and bass player here,” he explained.  “It was released March 17.  I’m excited and I’ve been doing a lot of stuff to promote it. I’ve been going around to baseball stadiums to sing the National Anthem and ‘God Bless America’.” 

He believes this single is his best project to date. “I think we’ve put more effort into the production of ‘Baseball Country’ and getting the sound right on this new single than I have with any of with my other singles. We dialed in the band, we spent a lot of time in the studio making sure we got it right. It's a rockin’ uptempo spring-summer jam and I’m hoping people like it.”

Find “Baseball Country” at Spotify here, along with previous tracks including “Left Field”, “Christmas With You” and Hell of a Year”.

Thinking back to the music he heard growing up, he recalled, “My dad had a CD player in his car that would rotate between a few different CDs.  The CD changer was in the car’s trunk, because this was in the early 2000s! As a kid I would ride with him driving to ball games.  He would rotate between a little bit of Springsteen, a little bit of Mellencamp, Jimmy Buffett.  I’ve been influenced by some of the harder rock stuff like Aerosmith, Queen.  I love ‘80s arena rock.”  

When you listen to “Baseball Country” you get a sense of that influence stirred into the country mix. 

“I also listened to some early Kenny Chesney, Tim McGraw,” he said.  “Even now, if I’m having a bad day, I’ll put on one of Tim McGraw’s earliest albums and just let it run and chill out.  I’ve been influenced by a ton of different stuff.  But I guess, who am I as an artist? Maybe a combination of all of those things.”  

Bryan has been described as a “trailblazer”. In 2021 Bryan became the only active professional baseball player to come out as gay at the time, and his story was featured in USA Today as well as 100+ media outlets around the world.

He has founded a 501 (c)(3) called Proud To Be In Baseball. I asked him to tell me about the project.

“Proud To Be In Baseball is a 501 (c)(3) non-profit organization, a charity, that I started about a year and a half ago with two of my friends that supports LBGTQ kids who want to play baseball,” he explained.  “It’s a really positive organization and we do a lot of events with different baseball teams spreading the message that anyone can play baseball and helping to inspire people.”

The project is dedicated to providing resources, advocacy and creating opportunities for the next generation of LGBTQ baseball players.

Now residing in Nashville, Bryan has scored songwriting credits on a number of cuts, many of which he wrote while still an active pro baseball player.  The sport is still part of his life, serving as Community Advisor for the group planning to bring a Major League Baseball team (with the working title The Nashville Stars) to Music City.

Bryan Ruby is definitely a country artist on the rise, already working on an EP titled Diamonds Are Foreverplanned for release later in 2023. Meanwhile discover more about him at his website and on Facebook. Follow him on Instagram, Tik Tok and his YouTube channel. Find his music on Spotify and read more about the Proud To Be In Baseball project here.  

 

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Bryan Ruby Tour Dates


02/23/2024 : Bryan Ruby at Nashville Songwr: Nashville, TN
03/11/2024 : Bryan Ruby at Atlanta Braves S: Venice, FL

About Preshias Harris

Preshias Harris Journalist

Preshias Harris is a music journalist who has interviewed everyone from Alabama to ZZ Top for articles and stories published in numerous music magazines. She is the author of longest-running monthly country music column in America and authored The College of Songology™ 101: The Singer/Songwriter’s ‘Need To Know’ Reference Handbook. As a music career development consultant with special emphasis on emerging and aspiring artists and songwriters, she focuses on ‘chasing the dream’ while understanding the realities of the music industry. She maintains a writers’ room on Music Row – named The Sangtuary – for her clients and their co-writers. She is a member of ASCAP (as a publisher), BMI, The Country Music Association (CMA), The Recording Academy, The National Association of Talent Directors (NATD) and a life member of Nashville Songwriters Association International (NSAI).

You can find out more about Preshias at https://www.collegeofsongology.com and find her blog at www.nashvillemusicline.com