Ry Cooder is a blues guitarist and vocalist who has become a major composer of motion-picture scores. Cooder launched a successful solo recording career in the early 1970s with a string of well-received albums featuring his unique blues-flavored slide guitar. The musicians with whom he recorded comprise a "who's who" of rock and blues. Over the years he has delved into such diverse influences as Gospel, Hawaiian slack-key, and Tex-Mex. His work has won a number of awards, including two Grammies.
"The word 'eclectic' may have been invented to describe people like Ryland 'Ry' Cooder, America's foremost musicologist, writer, and performer of motion-picture soundtracks; guitarist extraordinaire; and producer of the acclaimed Buena Vista Social Club recordings," wrote John Kehe in the CHRISTIAN SCIENCE MONITOR (30 July 1999).
Ryland Peter Cooder was born in Santa Monica, Calif., the son of Bill Cooder and Emma Casaroli. He is the father of drummer Joachim Herbert Cooder, who was born 23 Aug 1978 in Santa Monica.
In a profile in Esquire magazine, June 1999, Alex Wilkinson made the following observation:
"The first of Cooder's ancestors to arrive in America, around the time of the Revolution, came from the Low Countries--that is, the area including Holland, Belgium, and Luxembourg. He spelled his name Kuder, and one of his descendants married into a family in Ohio named Ryland. "
We have information on Rylands from Ohio in the 19th century, on the westward migration from Pennsylvania and Maryland. But we know of no Ryland women who married anyone named Kuder or Cooder.
One branch of the Ryland family was descended from an emigrant named Paulus Reylandt who arrived in Philadelphia from the port of Rotterdam in 1750. Paulus was later known as Paul Ryland, and his descendants variously used the spellings Ryland, Reyland, Riland, and Riley. They were found in Pennsylvania, Ohio, Indiana, and Illinois during the 1800s.
We'd like to know more about the connection of the Ryland family and the Kuder / Cooder family. If anyone can help identify Ry Cooder's Ryland ancestor, we can surely reciprocate by contributing more to his family background.
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