Ryan Weaver isn’t your typical country music artist. While most artists are born into music, Ryan’s story is unique. He didn’t even grow up listening to Hank and Merle. Little did he know, however, that his life’s path was directing him toward a career on the country music stage.
Ryan Weaver Follows Family Tradition
Ryan has a family history of military service, which made his decision to join the Army an easy choice. There is where their paths forked, though. Ryan chose to enter military intelligence, whereas his brothers pursued careers in the 75th Ranger Regiment. As Ryan says, “They were both all-American, badass superheroes.”
While on ever-glorious recruiting duty as a staff sergeant, Ryan’s brother Aaron called and encouraged him to put in his warrant officer flight training packet. He became accepted on the first round of boards and went off to earn his wings. With the help of his brothers, Steve and Aaron, Ryan navigated his course of training and graduated at the top of his flight class. “Both of my brothers always wanted what was best for me, and having them there to pin my flight wings on, where we took our last photo of us all together in uniform that we would ever have, was priceless.”
While in flight school, Ryan began performing in local karaoke and singing competitions, and he quickly realized how much he loved to sing and perform. “I had played in an orchestra and a few musicals as a kid, but I never knew how much I’d love doing this.” He then began performing in local bars on his off time and writing songs when on deployment.
Black Hawk Down
In 2004, while Ryan was deployed to Iraq, his brother Aaron (a cancer survivor) was also deployed with a different unit. On Jan. 8, 2004, riding as a passenger on a MEDEVAC Black Hawk to a bimonthly cancer screening, the helicopter was shot down, leaving no survivors. The loss of his brother destroyed Ryan, and he hung his wings up that day, never to fly an aircraft again. “After having his footsteps to follow in all of my life, I chose to make my own footsteps in his honor,” Ryan says.
His answer is simple when asked why he felt drawn to country music. “Country music tells stories unlike any other genre, in my humble opinion.” The loss of Aaron was the catalyst for his music career, and Ryan promised himself that no matter the stage he played on, he would always tell his brother’s story.
Ryan continued using his experience and knowledge to become an instructor, educating the next generation of military service members. There, music grew to be an important piece of his life. During his off time while he was an instructor and with the full support of his command, Ryan began to perform in the local music circuit and even traveled to Nashville to network.
A Veteran Heads Home
In 2012, Ryan Weaver retired with almost 21 years of active duty as a chief warrant officer 3. Upon his retirement, he went all in and moved to Nashville to go after his musical dreams full-time. “I knew the odds were stacked against me starting that late in the game, but I had never backed down from a challenge my entire military career. I wasn’t going to stop then, with the fuel I had for my fire to be successful in the music business.”
In 2013, Ryan’s brother-in-law, Randy Billings, was shot out of the sky while piloting a Black Hawk. Only one passenger survived, making Ryan and his family a two-time Gold Star Family. “It’s essential to me to tell their stories and inspire me to tell others’ stories in my music. There are very few methods more powerful to remember the actions of others than putting them in a song that will live forever.”
Ryan is a high-energy performer who breathes passion and patriotism into every song. Forged by his service to his country and fueled by his family’s losses, Ryan is outspoken about his beliefs. He often says, “Americans should always stand beside our heroes in the military, law enforcement, and first-responder communities. If they don’t, I will speak up.” Through his music, He tries to convey the human side of the lives and sacrifices made by not just military and LEOs but also by their families and friends. He credits his military career for giving him the tools to stay focused on the American Dream.
A Country Superstar is Born
Ryan has shared the stage with many well-known artists, including Charlie Daniels, Ted Nugent, and Blake Shelton, to name a few. He has also performed on stages small and large, even the greatest stage of country music, the Grand Ole Opry.
In 2017, Ryan Weaver became named the official Patriotic Voice of PBR (Professional Bull Riders) for their Celebrate America campaign. In 2018, he kicked off with PBR at Madison Square Garden. He then spent the next two years on tour at major arenas nationwide. Not only is Ryan pursuing his music, but he is also a motivational speaker. Holds partnerships with multiple pro-American companies and is probably one of the most patriotic Americans you could ever meet. He regularly performs at veterans and LEO fundraisers and events and supports these communities whenever he can.