|Photo by Moonmama|
Beginning at the tender age of 10, Chris Peck took to music like a fly to honey. Guitar was number one and was followed by drums at 11. As he grew older, his musical passions continued onto bass and a deeper connection to percussion. “I got way into Cuban music, Salsa and Rhumba, and learned some rudiments of Conga drums in Havana and Matanzas, Cuba when I was 17 and 18. I saw people go into trance at ceremonies, danced with ladies in the nightclubs, and drummed for 6 hours a day with an older gentleman named Roberto.”
Songwriting and musical arrangement began at 11 with a tune called “The Irishman”.
Chris left The Bay Area in 1998 to study music at New York University only to return in 2003. His main influences have always been other musical artists including but not limited to Weather Report, Kraftwerk, Mahavishnu Orchestra, Neil Young, Joni Mitchell, Laurie Anderson, Claude Debussy, Terry Riley, Deerhoof, the Wu Tang Clan, Arthur Russell, Yusef Lateef. When it comes to hip-hop for Peck, the crème de la crème is the great New Orleans mc Mystikal. “Some musical fascinations lose their luster for me, but not Mystikal. I keep feeling more impressed by him whenever I come back to his music. It’s all about his voice, the characters he inhabits, his story telling, and for God’s sake, his rhythm. There’s a song called “Shine”, dedicated to his sister’s memory, that is so dang soulful and rhythmically complex.”
With 1 EP’s and soon to be 5 Full-length albums under his belt, Home Phone- (2010), Le Chronique (2009) Groundhog's Day (2008) and The Garden Sings (2005), Chris is anything but shy about promoting his own music. Whether standing tall alone as Peck The Town Crier, the multi-instrumentalist genius, or with a band of rotating musical friends called The Crysmuscles, Chris does all he can to enhance his quirky sound and songs. Fusing White Boy Poetic Rap with anything form Rocking to Ethereal tunes, you may find a lot of similarities to the artist Beck. “My first album is called “Your Tape Machine’s Not Broken”. I made it on an old 4-track reel to reel, and it’s really funky-sounding and blown out. Most of it happened in the summer of ’97, when I had just got back from my first two weeks in Havana. I made an altar on my ceiling, dedicated to Elegua, the Santeria deity who gives and takes life. I remember the feeling of making that music, I was way overjoyed and had all these instruments and cables out in my room, eating lots of apples. I felt kind of possessed, like people talk about with automatic writing. Because of the purity of that experience, I still think that album is the most sacred to me. At some point this year, I’m going to re-release it.”
“I really hope my music will be, fresh, surprising, healing & real. If I can get those elements together, I’ll be making music I’m really consistently stoked about. I would love for my music to be heard by little pods of people all around the world; Like some little rare breed of bird, that convenes on an island once a year and celebrates their quirkiness together. When I’m an old man, I would love to meet young musicians and work with them. I love that continuum of music, and of human knowledge in general. I love my heroes and teachers so much, and I want to do MY thing with just as much fire and dedication as they did THEIRS.”
All other photos of Chris Peck are by Cat Rivera:
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Thanks again Dan Rauck for editing my words. ox