August 22nd, 2021


Summit Music Hall

Denver, CO

August 24, 2021

Royal and the Serpent is the band name and the personas of Ryan Santiago.

“I definitely feel like I’m two people living in one body, where I can just slip at the drop of dime and become a totally different person,” notes Santiago, who equally identifies as a “sweet sunshine angel” (i.e., the Royal persona) and a “freaky devil maniac” (the Serpent).

Santiago was a competitive dancer and into musical theater. She credits Donna Missal for teaching her guitar.

The band released the Searching for Nirvana EP in June which features singles “I can’t get high”, “girls (ft Phem)”, and “Phuck U”

The band’s 2020 EP Get A Grip featured the hit single “Overwhelmed.” Royal and the Serpent (RATS) has had a rapid rise from “Overwhelmed.” They were part of a live stream tour for Yungblud in 2020. They have been releasing edgy videos to their gripping music on a regular basis. Now they are finishing their first tour opening for PVRIS. RATS is a visceral experience mixing raspy vocals with a blunt force. They mix the ferocity of Halestorm with the theatrics of Garbage. FEMMUSIC was honored to have an e-mail interview with Santiago about the band and tour. For info visit @royalandtheserpent

FEMMUSIC: What was the biggest challenge making the Searching for Nirvana EP?

RS: Honestly releasing it was the hardest part. I couldn’t stop second guessing myself and I was so nervous until it was finally out. It was like a huge weight was lifted from me. Shoutout to my team for helping me get it across the finish line.

FEMMUSIC: What were your goals for the EP? 

RS: It was the first “full” body of work I had ever put out – so I think cohesion was my number 1 goal. I really wanted to make something that was meant to be listened to front to back. I wanted it to tell a story – a little introduction into my world and brain.

FEMMUSIC:  What changed in your approach to making Searching for Nirvana vs Get A Grip?

RS: I think stylistic choices. We really leaned into the rock space a little further than we had before. I also had a bit of a heavier hand in the production than before. Marky and I got to spend almost a whole month polishing it up before it was ready to be heard.

FEMMUSIC: Tell me about working with Phem & Yoshi Flower. What do you look for in collaborators?

RS: Gosh two of some of my favorite people on earth. Yoshi is a longtime friend and collaborator. Phem and I met for the first time the day we wrote “Girls” – and we immediately hit it off and are now still very close. I think vibe is key when it comes to working with others. It’s all energy – when the vibe is right the music speaks for itself.

FEMMUSIC: You’re signed to Atlantic Records. What made you sign to Atlantic? What do you look for in a label?

RS: Atlantic was the first major that showed interest in the project – and I knew immediately that they were the ones for me. They were so welcoming, so warm, it felt like home the first time I walked in the doors. I think most importantly the #1 thing I was looking for in a label was a team that cared about the project, the music, the vision, etc. I knew from the first meeting I took that they had real interest in what I was doing and that meant more to me than anything.

FEMMUSIC: You’re touring with PVRIS. I’ve read you’ve had social anxiety in the past. How do you manage touring? What do you most like about it?

RS: Ooooof. Hahaha. We’re still in the midst of it and we’re almost halfway through. I’m not gonna lie – it’s been an adjustment! I’m also HIGHLY claustrophobic so that’s probably been the toughest part. Sometimes I get random panic attacks in the van. But for the most part we’re staying out of the crowds and staying safe with covid and all. Aside from some of the smaller hurdles – I love everything about touring. It’s my first tour and I can’t even begin to tell you how grateful I am to be getting to play shows every night with my best friends. I wouldn’t trade this life for the world.

FEMMUSIC: What challenges, if any, have you faced as a woman in the music industry? And how did you overcome them?

RS: In the beginning of my career it was a lot harder to get people to listen to my ideas and suggestions. People would easily steamroll right over me. I’ve really learned how to own my voice in a room and keep my energy strong. As a woman you sometimes have to command the attention. A little spice never hurt anybody 😉

FEMMUSIC:  Can you describe your songwriting technique?

RS: Sure! For the most part I co-write everything. So it usually looks like: showing up to a studio with another writer and a producer, hanging for a bit, jamming for a bit, and seeing what pours out. It’s always based on personal experience/emotion/whatever I’m feeling at the time. I think the best songs are written when we take our brains out of the equation and we just let the music come through us. 

FEMMUSIC: What song, not your own, has has the biggest influence on you, and why?

RS: This is like such a tough question? Because SO much music has shaped me to be who I am today. I think if I had to pick one in this very moment it would have to be “Welcome to the Black Parade.” It’s a masterpiece in every sense of the word. A modern day Bohemian Rhapsody if you will. I could only dream to someday make something even half as iconic.

FEMMUSIC: What one thing would you like to change about the music industry?

RS: I guess if I could change one thing it might be the competitive edge a lot of people seem to have. I wanna believe there’s room for all of us to do what we love and still make it to the top.

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June 27th, 2021

Royal & the Serpent releases the edgy official music video for single “girls” ft phem today, off her self-reflective EP searching for nirvana, which was released earlier this month via Atlantic Records.

Recent single “phuck u” and the EP release succeed single “i can’t get high,” which Royal released in February and played in her set on YUNGBLUD’s ‘The Weird Time of Life’ global digital tour last year. Royal released the get a grip EP in October 2020, which features her viral hit “Overwhelmed.”

You can catch Royal live this summer as direct support on PVRIS’ North American tour, kicking off August 6th in Detroit and wrapping September 2nd in Los Angeles.


August 6, 2021 Fri
The Majestic
August 7, 2021 Sat
House of Blues
August 8, 2021 Sun
Express Live
August 10, 2021 Tue
House of Blues
August 11, 2021 Wed
New York
Webster Hall
August 13, 2021 Fri
Union Transfer
August 14, 2021 Sat
Harrisburg Univ.
August 17, 2021 Tue
Rams Head
August 18, 2021 Wed
August 19, 2021 Thu
August 21, 2021 Sat
August 22, 2021 Sun
Southside MH
August 24, 2021 Tue
August 25, 2021 Wed
Salt Lake City
August 27, 2021 Fri
August 28, 2021 Sat
Wonder Ballroom 
August 30, 2021 Mon
Ace of Spades
September 1, 2021 Wed
San Francisco
September 2, 2021 Thu
Los Angeles
Fonda Theatre

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June 3rd, 2021

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May 24th, 2021

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May 20th, 2021

Fiery alt pop singer/songwriter Royal & the Serpent releases single “phuck u” today and announces her searching for nirvana EP, which will be released next month.

Royal & the Serpent released her last single “i can’t get high” in February, which she played in her set on YUNGBLUD’s ‘The Weird Time of Life’ global digital tour last year. “ICGH” follows “bad kids” ft Yoshi Flower and Royal’s October get a grip EP, which features her viral hit “Overwhelmed.”

In each piece of music she shares with the world, Royal reveals the wild duality at the heart of her artistry and speaks to the incredible power of embracing your true nature, in all its outrageous complexity. A Gemini to the core, she’s passionate but pensive, sensitive but self-possessed, enigmatic but an open book when it comes to exposing what’s inside her mind. “I definitely feel like I’m two people living in one body, where I can just slip at the drop of dime and become a totally different person,” notes Santiago, who equally identifies as a “sweet sunshine angel” (i.e., the Royal persona) and a “freaky devil maniac” (the Serpent).

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March 27th, 2021

Royal and the Serpent (RATS) have released singles “bad kids”, and “Overwhelmed.” RATS released get a grip EP last year.  Now they release the self-directed video for “I can’t get high.” The song is a longing of a past relationship overflowing with anger and emotion. It is visceral and alive in RATS raspy voice.

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