Ryan Lewis: 15 Facts You Didn’t Know (Part 1)


Ryan Lewis has been producing music professionally for nearly 10 years. Best known as the production half of the award-winning hip-hop duo Macklemore and Ryan Lewis, they have released an EP and two full-length albums together. Unapologetically real with their socially conscious lyrics and catchy beats, they hit it big with singles like “Thrift Shop,” “Can’t Hold Us” and “Same Love.” Read on to find out more about Ryan Lewis and his music career, and check back soon for part two of this list, coming soon.

Number Fifteen: Ryan Lewis Released an EP Without Lyrics

Ryan Lewis released his only solo EP, Instrumentals, in 2008, just before officially beginning his work with Macklemore. The EP contains four mixes he wrote and produced himself. With the exception of a few of his samples, there are no lyrics to any of the tracks.

Number Fourteen: He Graduated from High School Early

After moving to Seattle with his family at the start of his junior year of high school, Lewis was not really excited about transferring. Since he wanted to get out of there so badly, he decided to take summer classes and graduate in 2005, a year earlier than if he had not.

Number Thirteen: He Met Macklemore Through His Photography

Besides producing, Ryan Lewis is also a photographer. In fact, this is how he met Macklemore. He started out as his photographer in 2006 and the two’s friendship and partnership began to grow from there.

Number Twelve: He Directed All of Their Music Videos

If producing and photography weren’t enough, Ryan Lewis is also a music video director. He is credited as the director on all of the duo’s music videos. In 2014, he also helped direct and produce the video for Fences’ “Arrows.”

Number Eleven: He’s a Closet Film Director

As part of his thesis at the University of Washington, he created a short film called Fake Empire. Touching on themes of consumerism and human nature, the film stars Macklemore walking around South Africa on a normal day, attached to his computer and iPhone. The film sample’s from The National’s song “Fake Empire,” where Lewis also got the name for the almost stop-motion-like short.

Number Ten: He Was a Member of Young Life

Ryan Lewis’ father was a regional director for the non-profit Christian youth group for many years. As a result, Ryan was also a member of the group as a child.

Number Nine: He Helped Macklemore Stay Sober

When Lewis first met Macklemore, Macklemore was starting to get caught up in drugs and alcohol. But, in 2008, after Macklemore became sober, Lewis became a positive force in his life. So positive, in fact, that they started working even closer and officially started calling themselves ‘Macklemore and Ryan Lewis,’ and released their first EP together. Stay tuned for part two of this list of 15 interesting facts about Ryan Lewis, coming soon.