Every once in a while, a new artist emerges that has the potential and drive to reach the masses. Thanks to the power of the internet, such an artist can achieve a level of familiarity and build a die-hard fan base long before they become a household name. Chris Lind is more than capable of joining that elite group.
Lind is a native of South Jersey (near Philly) who became a driving force on the NYC music scene before recently relocating to his dad’s native Hawaii. He attended Skidmore College in Saratoga Springs, New York, splitting time living, working and gigging in Honolulu, as well as studying Slack Key guitar with renowned artist Ozzie Kotani. After graduating with a degree in Music, he moved to New York City. Within a year he began gigging at hot spots like Rockwood Music Hall (ultimately performing on all three stages), The Living Room and Pete’s Candy Store (where he secured various residencies).
Growing a loyal fan base via his headline performances, Lind also opened for John Cruz at Le Poisson Rouge and the legendary Michael McDonald at The Ridgefield Playhouse in Connecticut. Expanding his sphere of influence, he later performed at The Tin Angel in Philadelphia, The Rite Spot in San Francisco, the Hotel Café in Los Angeles, The Stone Pony in Asbury Park, NJ and Downbeat Lounge and Anna O’Brien’s in Honolulu. Towards the end of his time living in New York, he recorded and performed at CMJ 2014 with a newly reformed version of Americana power-pop band End of Love, whose members included Wilco’s Nels Cline and Big Star’s Jody Stephens. Lind’s “day jobs” during this time included teaching guitar at St. Francis College in Brooklyn and managing a prominent rehearsal studio in Greenwich Village.
“Living, working and playing in NYC/Brooklyn these past ten years, I’ve been able to see so many amazing artists who have inspired the development of my own style, vibe and point of view as a songwriter and performer,” says Lind. “I’ve been exposed to many amazing places and venues, all rich with unique vibes. The guys in my band are honestly some of my greatest influences.”
A few years after catching fire with his singles “What Is Not Yours” and “A Story of Us” – which were featured in two episodes of the CW’s Smallville – and his debut EP Home, the soulful-voiced Lind takes a long look at the colorful history of where he’s been.
He and his band, featuring Aaron Nevezie on guitar, Dave Burnett on drums and Jeff Hill on bass, have completed work on their forthcoming sophomore EP, which will be released in February. Nevezie and Burnett also had co-producing credits on the project. In the meantime, the band has just released the first single, “Drive,” which reminds this writer of a hybrid between Tom Petty and John Mellencamp.
The song starts out mellow, with an amazing acoustic guitar rift that announces to the world that the song to come will blow your mind. Then, as the chorus kicks in, the tempo shifts into high percussive gear and the multi-talented singer/songwriter shares powerful lyrics that perfectly reflect the forward momentum of his emergence as a force in indie pop/rock. “Drive” is about the desire to move West with someone he loves. The chorus reaches its climax with these reflective words: “The only way we’ll ever get there is the shaking of our hearts. The only way we’ll ever know is if we drive.” With these hauntingly beautiful lyrics and the remainder of the songs on the EP, Lind declares emphatically now is the time to move on to bigger and bolder opportunities.
This is definitely an artist to check out and to add to your radar. For more information about him, check out his website and Facebook pages, follow him on Twitter and subscribe to his Soundcloud channel.
Thanks to Jen Lyneis of Ue3 Promotions and Steve Belkin of Open All Nite Entertainment for bringing this amazing artist to our attention.