Jessie Murph – “What Happened to Ryan” Lyrics Meaning

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Written By Joanna Landrum

Joanna holds a BSc in English Literature and uses her expertise in literary analysis to uncover the deeper meaning of her favorite songs.

“Jessie Murph’s “What Happened to Ryan” tugs at the heartstrings, recounting a story of loss and concern for an old friend. The lyrics reflect on past memories, painting a picture of carefree days that have since taken a darker turn. Ryan, once a vibrant part of these memories, has now fallen silent, leaving a trail of worry and unanswered questions. Jessie Murph uses her song to address the heavy topic of substance abuse and its impact, urging listeners to pay attention to their friends in need. Her message is clear: Don’t overlook the signs. Don’t let the people you care about slip through the cracks.

Jessie Murph isn’t just telling a story; she’s sending out a message that might hit closer to home than you think. Discover the raw emotions and powerful narrative woven into “What Happened to Ryan”.


“What Happened to Ryan” Lyrics Meaning

Starting off with nostalgia, “French fries off the dollar menu, Walkin’ right outside the venue” brings us back to simpler times, highlighting the small, joyous moments. But quickly, the tone shifts as we realize someone is missing from these memories. “With somebody I used to know” – Ryan, a friend from the past, is brought into the spotlight.

The chorus, “What happened to Ryan? He’s radio silent,” reveals the heart of the concern. Jessie is out of touch with her friend, and his silence is alarming. “Whoa, and last time I saw him I think he was drinkin’ and drivin’” indicates a past filled with risky behavior, leaving us to wonder if Ryan is okay.

The song dives deeper into their past, “First it was vodka in a water bottle,” highlighting the beginning of substance abuse. Jessie acknowledges her own role, “A real fuckin’ friend would’ve taken your cup,” regretting not stepping in sooner.

As we reach the bridge, “So tell me when it’s over, Maybe I’ll come over,” there’s a glimmer of hope. Jessie is ready to reconnect, to go back to the times before everything changed. She’s reaching out, offering support, and longing for a resolution.

The Story Behind “What Happened to Ryan”

Jessie Murph has crafted a narrative that is both personal and universal. While the specifics of Ryan’s story may be rooted in her own experiences, the themes of lost connections and the aftermath of substance abuse resonate widely.

At the time of writing, Jessie was reflecting on her past, recognizing the impact that certain experiences had on her and her friends. “What Happened to Ryan” serves as a cathartic release, a way for Jessie to express her concerns and regrets, and potentially reach out to those who might be struggling.

The song is a call to action, urging listeners to be vigilant about the well-being of their friends, not to overlook the signs of substance abuse, and to remember the power of reaching out. Jessie Murph’s heartfelt lyrics remind us all that it’s never too late to reconnect and offer support, echoing the sentiment that not everything has to end.