At 18, Chris began grinding it out at the sweaty, smoke filled dives and basement beer bashes of his college days at Va. Tech. This would serve as the proving ground for a life spent in vans and sometimes tour buses that was to characterize the next twenty years. After honing his songcraft and performance chops (guitar/bass/vocals) for almost a decade, none other than entertainment mogul and music industry legend, Dick Clark took notice picking Chris’ band to be 1 of the 5 finalists in a nationwide tape search with thousands of hopefuls. Dick Clark’s Battle of the Bands aired on ABC in prime time, and although they didn’t win, their performance attracted the attention of Joan Jett’s indie label, Blackheart Records, marking Chris’ first national release as a recording artist. It was a starting point, and the single, “Atlas” by Red Henry enjoyed regional success across the midwest.
A few years down the road, with some hard lessons learned, it was time to go from indie to major. Chris hooked up with fellow east coast club veteran and songsmith, Andy Waldeck to form Earth To Andy. Due to their bombastic live shows and undeniable pop hooks backed up with a thunderous post-grunge wallop, the band was quickly scooped up by Red Light, Dave Mathews’ management firm.
The pieces were now in place and Earth To Andy soon signed with Warner Bros., releasing the critically acclaimed “Chronicle Kings”, helmed by super-producer Nick Launay (Talking Heads, Sting, Eric Clapton, INXS and Silverchair, to name a few). During the recording, the band was shocked to receive a call from the label informing them that newly converted ETA fan, Robert DeLeo (Stone Temple Pilots) would like to join them in the studio and perhaps even contribute some of his vast talents to the cause, which he did (Chris later co-wrote several new songs with Robert and Andy). He then worked side by side with master mixer, Chris Lord Alge to finalize the record. The first single from “Chronicle Kings” received solid airplay on modern rock radio and was featured on the hit tv shows “Beverly Hills 90210″ and “Charmed” but alas, the stars did not align for the band. Though the record didn’t break through, it did earn Chris and the boys some quite illustrious supporters including Chris Daughtry, Emerson Hart (Tonic) and Mike Meadows (Taylor Swift), all of which Chris has since had the pleasure of working with on new material.
Down the next stretch of the road Chris would expand his stylistic horizons, recording and touring with a host of different artists of varying genres. First there was Getaway Car, DC’s finest purveyors of power pop who would be chosen by the legendary alt-rock giant, WHFS to headline the outside stage at their annual mega-concert, the HFStival. Chris has collaborated on many songs over the years with Getaway Car’s Todd Wright and recently their song with Cassidy Ford, “You’ve Got This Hold On Me” was prominently featured on several episodes of Nick At Night’s hit show, “Hollywood Heights”.
Next, Chris joined up with Atlantic recording artist Lucy Woodward which would be his first foray into the world of Top 40 pop. Touring with Lucy was an eye opener for the already well-traveled east coast native, and would find him jetting off to the far corners of the globe, including Japan and New Zealand. Dipping into that world introduced the long time rocker to a whole new universe of sound production.
But it would be back to the meat and potatoes for Chris’ next gig. He spent the ensuing 4 years touring relentlessly with Americana/ Alt. Rock live power house, The Pat McGee Band (Warners), along the way contributing bass and backing vocals to three albums, “Save Me”, and “Vintage Stages Live”, and “These Days”. The band was known for pushing the envelope in their live sets, expanding and morphing the music on a nightly basis so that the audience would never see the same show twice.