Dear future me,
Do you remember writing this blog? On December 2nd of 2016, I released my debut album titled Dear Future Me. You can find it on teddyrankin.bandcamp.com if you are interested in giving it a listen! It currently has over 1,000 plays on bandcamp and a very generous review from the Erie Reader. So far, people have been extremely supportive about my record and I can’t thank everyone enough for their kindness throughout this process.
Before I go into more detail about how and why I made this album, I need to thank a few people specifically. My loving parents, Kim and Glenn, are amazingly supportive and encouraging. They have also put up with my late night recording sessions without complaint. When I show my mom a new song, her smile reminds me why writing music is important to me. I am incomprehensibly grateful for my dad and all he has taught me through the years. His musicianship and talent are immense and I know I will never be able to shred guitar like my old man. I have certainly inherited his perfectionist gene, which has only made my music much higher in quality. I would also like to thank Edge’s Editor-in-Chief, Aaron Mook, for his insight and guidance. Without Aaron’s help, I don’t know if I ever would’ve been able to release this album. Last but not least, I need to thank my beautiful and amazing girlfriend, Devin, for giving me the inspiration to write many of the tracks on the record. There are a plethora of others that have helped me along the way, and to all of my awesome supporters: Thank you all so much!
Since I was a toddler, I have wanted to be a rockstar. There is photographic evidence of little me walking around holding a toy guitar. When I was 10 years old, I was diagnosed with stage three Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. I had to travel to Pittsburgh very often for nine months to receive my chemotherapy and radiation treatments. On our frequent road trips, my parents and I would always listen to The Beatles and sing along. I got to know every word, every note, and every solo of every track from every album. By learning from The Beatles, I knew the framework of a great song. From there, I found more modern artists that really seemed to speak my language. I filled my iPod with Conor Oberst, Phoenix, Dawes and Daft Punk. I started writing my own songs in high school and to be honest, they were pretty bad at first. Songwriting is a skill that I am still very much developing. However, I find that in my failures to find the perfect words or replicate the vibe of my favorite bands, there is my own originality.
On Dear Future Me, I recorded each song in my bedroom on GarageBand. If anyone out there reading this wants to give me a record deal, I would absolutely be willing to change my methods, but for now, it’s the best I can do. For me, writing music is very therapeutic and a way to express myself. I sometimes write a song just for myself if I am feeling down or stressed. I had an amazing creative writing teacher in high school named Mrs. Campbell who really inspired me to write for fun and now I’m going to Gannon to become an English teacher myself! I hope that when people hear my songs, they can relate to them the way I can relate to songs by Conor Oberst or The Beatles. Music means a lot to me and I am very proud to have created something that might be meaningful to others.
The last song on my album, which shares its name, is an unconventionally long track that serves as a letter to myself at any point in the future. I ask myself questions about the future, as well as remind my future self to be happy. I recommend writing yourself a note and hiding it for future you to find. You can put anything you want in it, like a written time capsule.
I also encourage you to check out “Dear Future Me” on teddyrankin.bandcamp.com and tell your friends!
Everything in your past shapes you and you never know where the future will take you, but for now, at least, it’s now.