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  • Writer's pictureDana Piccoli

Ryan Cassata is back with a fierce new album and single

Ryan Cassata may be young, but at 26, he's already had a career and life in activism to rival those twice his age. Cassata, a talented singer/songwriter, was the first openly trans musician to perform on the Warped Tour and has since appeared in over 100 articles from Billboard to Buzzfeed.

Cassata's newest project, along with co-writer Jeni McKenna, is an album called, The Witches Made Me Do It, which he describes as a "folk-rock concept album that speaks on the intersection of falling in love while the world is in distress and the political climate is tense." According to Cassata, the lyrics "dive into some heavy topics including the oppression of minority groups including immigrants and the LGBTQ community, the institution of religion and its effect on society, surviving and coping with trauma, overcoming personal obstacles and environmental obstacles (such as the California wildfires), the quest of self-discovery and growth, and the pursuit of self-healing through magical soul searching while immersed in romantic love."  

The result is a soaring album of twinkling acoustic guitar and plaintive strings, led by Cassata's clear and emotive voice. It speaks of longing for love, understanding, home - content that's universally relatable especially at a time like this. The Witches Made Me Do It stylistically harkens back to a time when 90's folk-rockers like Ani Difranco and Elliot Smith led the scene, yet feels intensely fresh and topical at the same time.

In addition to The Witches Made Me Do It, Cassata has recently released a single pushing back against gender binaries. Aptly named, "Gender Binary (Fuck You)" is a punky ode to being yourself.

Cassata continues to be a vital voice of his generation, who backs up his songwriting gravitas with actions like fighting for trans health care and ending bullying in schools.

You can pick up The Witches Made Me Do It anywhere you buy music. Stay tuned for an exclusive Queer Media Matters giveaway, too.

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