Canning name-check Led Zeppelin and Björk for eclectic playlist of influences

From radio-ready pop to avant-garde experimentalism, Canning shout out the diverse array of artists who inspire their work. 

Fans of Canning will already be well aware of the band’s expansive sonic palette. One of the Chicago trio’s more recent singles Shortline jumps between genres with such finesse that you’d think it has legs — from the groove of its central bassline to the metal-adjacent performance of lead vocalists Ricky Canning and Fritz Armstrong. 

And while dipping into an eclectic array of sounds might prove too convoluted for a lesser band, Canning pull off the feat by not losing sight of the bread and butter of classic rock and roll.

Canning 'Shortline'

Of course, the refinement of the band’s sound is borne from their collective love for music in all its forms. During his recent interview with Happy Mag, Ricky praised the music scene of his Chicago hometown, specifically commending “its diversity and ever willingness to dig deeper.” 

It’s the same attitude towards diversity that extends to the band’s own influences, which span the radio-ready pop of Shakira to the avant-garde experimentalism of Björk

Canning single 'Shortline'

My ears are always open to harmonic progressions and melodies from any style of music,” Canning said of his musical inspirations — with a resulting playlist that makes good on that promise. 

Perhaps the figurehead of Canning’s muses is Led Zeppelin, who Ricky credits as “a trigger for playing the guitar.” The legendary band makes numerous appearances on Canning’s playlist, including classic ‘70s cuts like Since I’ve Been Loving You. 

I fell in love with the acoustical aspect of Led Zeppelin III,” Canning explained. “Still to this day I write most of the songs on an acoustical guitar.” 

While Zeppelin’s influence is clear, Canning isn’t solely focussed on the rock staples. Their shared playlist features everyone from Paramore to Flume and Britney Spears, the last of whom made the cut with her 2003 smash hit Toxic. 

Canning elsewhere shout out The Allman Brothers, Grateful Dead and Stevie Ray Vaughn, as well as British rapper M.I.A

It takes a special kind of passion to be so receptive to genres seemingly outside of their wheelhouse, but a quick skim through Canning’s catalogue will pinpoint exactly how each influence is drawn upon. 


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Below, Canning share their ultimate playlist of influences, with 142 entrants and counting. Take a trip through the band’s ever-increasing palette below, and head here to listen to their single, Shortline.