Throwback to 2016

An awaited release leaves long-term fans blown away


Photo courtesy of Warner Records

Ricky Montgomery released his EP on April 15, 2022, six years after his last album.

Bowie Zekpa, Staff Reporter

After six long years of being dormant in the music industry American singer, musician and songwriter Ricky Montgomery came back into the spotlight with his seven long song EP, “It’s 2016 Somewhere.” Montgomery pours his heart and soul out into some of the songs saying they’re the most personal things he’s written. The collection of songs is a story of his life and reveals the hardships he’s faced.

Being previously released as a separate song on June 24th, 2021, “Talk To You” is the second song in the EP. This song starts off with an upbeat feel to contrast the yearning lyrics he sings. It is confirmed by Montgomery that the song is about his father who took his own life when he was 15. He expressed emotions of sorrow while wishing he could talk to his father one last time. The repeated ‘I wish I could talk to you’ in the song gives listeners all around a feeling of longing. A feeling of going through a grieving process of someone who you should’ve already ‘forgotten’ about. The complexity of the father-son relationship is a running theme throughout the whole EP. He continues on to talk about what it would be like in the present time if he ran into his father today, singing “wonder if we met today would you turn and walk away.” The fact that Ricky as well as his father were going through things complicates the grieving process. Going through back and forth type of emotions of being upset but also not wanting to be selfish.

The third song on the EP opens with a sad melancholy feel. In “Sorry for Me,” Montgomery goes in-depth to talk about the emotional ups and downs with the parental figures in his life. While having a somewhat good relationship with his mom, the song comes from a point of view of a type of victim. Having the hard conversation of telling his mother she needs to separate from the awful relationship she’s in with the step-father. The song repeatedly expresses sorrow and apologies for not wanting to make himself or his mother upset. This song is sung kind of like a fairy tale setting a time in place for the introduction of each verse. At the start of each verse, Montgomery opens by giving the setting. Whether it’s Tuesday or Wednesday morning, he introduces each verse with a unique attention grabber. The difference in the format of the song compared to the mournful meaning and tempo of the song keeps listeners engaged, as well as persuading them to listen many more times.

Gaining traction on the popular social media app TikTok, and being a part of several trends including being associated with the animated adaptation of the 1980 manga series ‘Banana Fish’, the sixth song on the EP is “Mr. Loverman.” Originally being released in Ricky’s 2016 album “Montgomery Ricky”, this song has been through many meanings and is a big part of Montgomery’s climb to fame. This song talks about his father going through a loss and/or breakup and using unhealthy means such as alcohol to cope. Throughout the song, he repeatedly refers to himself as “Mr. Loverman.” Tying that identity to himself. He expresses a mountain of emotion in this song and really spills out everything he’s feeling about his father, his life, and the cycle of grief he’s repeatedly had to go through. Gaining over 250 million streams on Spotify alone, “Mr. Loverman” gaining traction set Montgomery up for success. By paying homage to his 2016 climb to fame and titling his EP “It’s 2016 Somewhere” fans of Ricky all around get to feel the heartfelt understanding of making it and being successful in something you love.

The last and seventh song on this EP is “I Don’t Love You Anymore.” This song gives the feeling of acceptance and being ready to come to terms with the past. The original song was released by Montgomery and his band ‘The Honeysticks’ in 2018, but on the EP, Ricky includes the acoustic version. The acoustic version includes more raw vocals, going along with the overall theme of the EP. The choice to end on a sincere heartfelt note wraps everything up, along with giving the listeners a feeling of conclusion.

In short, Ricky’s comeback had his fans feeling a range of emotions through every song. He did a stunning job translating his feelings into an art form. Listening to this EP completely through makes the 6 year wait worth it and the experience of listening to the songs for the first time is something I could recommend to anyone.