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"Chase the Music"

The first rule for talking with Chase, a pinup-hot singer-songwriter out of Tampa who has appeared in both the Beautiful Girls of South Florida and the Coyote Ugly 2006 calendars, is not to be intimidated. Sure, the sleek myspace photos of this young brunette look like something straight out of a Versace ad or a Maxim centerfold (did I mention she's appeared in FHM, also?). And sure, Chase appeared on Media Talk and CBS' Studio 10 and won the Vo5 Red Hot Rising Star Contest, all in just the past couple months, and she appears ready to burst onto the national radar with an explosion rather than a blip. But don't be intimidated.

I meet up with Chase at the SoHo Starbuck's right across the street from Whiskey Park, where she works as a bartender, and I am surprised that she looks and acts so…well, approachable. What was I expecting, though? That she'd come to a magazine interview wearing the same slick photoshoot-style clothes that she wears in her publicity stills? Or that she'd dress the same for coffee as she might for a concert? I've never met Ozzy Osbourne or Gene Simmons, but I can only imagine that neither wears facepaint or bites the heads off bats when they meet up for interviews.

So I swallow and try not to be surprised that Chase looks the same as any energetic and driven young woman in Tampa; she's just a couple hours away from becoming an overnight success, but she doesn't give off the too-good-for-you vibes of Paris Hilton. She smiles and laughs often, speaks with excitement about her musical influences and her passion for rock music and songwriting, and even though I know the woman sitting across the table has appeared in Glamour and Jane and Teen Vogue, I obey that first rule: don't be intimidated.

"You've appeared in several magazines," I ask her. "Which are you most proud about?"

"Allure," she says. "Allure meant the most. That's one of my favorite magazines."

"Not FADE, huh?" I ask.

Don't be intimidated, but don't flatter yourself, either.

The second rule of talking with Chase: don't ask for free Vo5 shampoo. As the winner of their Red Hot Rising Star Contest, she was supposed to receive a lifetime supply of shampoo, but she's yet to see any product. "I'm still waiting," she says jokingly, with (perhaps) just a tiny tremor of sadness in her voice, too. "I was going to have a party, a hot oil treatment party, a slumber party. All the kids coming together. But I'm still waiting."

And so, unfortunately, everyone on her Christmas list did not receive the promised "shampoo gift basket" this year.

Of course, the lifetime supply of shampoo doesn't really bother her. For Chase, simply winning Vo5's contest (and, as a result, appearing in their ad campaign) has given new life to her solo career and her dream of making it big as both an acoustic-rock-based singer and songwriter.

While she's certainly enjoyed success in the past several years, the mythical "big break" that popular musicians speak about had always, until this contest, been just beyond her reach. Two years ago, Chase thought she had it. Someone had passed her EP along to Sully Erna, the lead singer of Godsmack, who met with Chase and expressed his interest in signing her to his label under Universal. Chase was flown to New York for a private showcase in front of the president of Universal Records, but no deal ultimately came of the meetings or the showcase.

"It was awesome," Chase says of the experience, "but it was really depressing because it's very hard to get to that point, even. It's hard doing what I do because you have to really stay focused and try to rely on faith to get you through it. At that point, I was just thinking, does this opportunity come again? I didn't know."

Instead of collapsing, she remained resilient and used her dealings with the recording industry as a learning experience and a creative focal point. "As a result of that experience," she says, "I did write one of my favorite songs, which is 'Why,' so I'm happy about that. I wound up writing a lot of new material from that dark place."

Still, a deal with a major label—an incredible opportunity into which she had invested so much energy—had just passed, and Chase was forced to consider new options. Was she really supposed to be a solo act? Should she really be writing her own songs, playing guitar? Rock bands with female lead singers could achieve incredible success, after all. And what about pop music? So many directions for her ambitions. So many ideas of what she could become, and some of them were drastically different than what she had originally dreamed for herself. By chance, Chase submitted her solo work to the Vo5 contest on the final deadline for entries. Nationwide voting commenced, but Chase continued exploring her career options.

Just two months ago, in fact, she was in New York recording material for a band that had asked her to front as lead singer. "It was a good opportunity," Chase says, "but I was rea - FADE magazine 2007


Brand New Girl (LP) 2007
The Floating Diaries- a compilation of Chase recordings (LP) 2006
Twentysomething in America (EP) 2005
Blue Sky (demo) 2002

related projects:
Stiletto (EP) 2007



Winner of 2006's Conde Nast and Vo5 "Red Hot Rising Star" contest, singer/songwriter Chrissy Chase has been catching the ears of music lovers and industry veterans alike. As the current voice and face for Vo5's Rising Star, she has graced newsstands internationally in Glamour, Allure, Teen Vogue, Jane, Lucky, Self, FHM, and Makes & Models. As an accomplished songstress, you can find her playing shows from the Daytona 500 (2005), South by Southwest (2007), Christina Aguilera (2007), Los Angeles' "Wealthy Empowered Women" (2007), to features on the Speed Channel, NBC's "The Spot", NBC's "Daytime", FOX news "What's Right in Tampa Bay", CBS's regional Rising Star, CBS's "Studio 10", and "Media Talk". Chase also landed the cover of music/fashion magazine BAM! (2005) and FADE (2007), in which she was the featured artist in both publications. She is one of twelve in the first ever national Coyote Ugly Saloon calendar (2006) and Beautiful Girls of South Florida calendar (2006). She currently wrapped her new album "Brand New Girl" (2007) recorded and produced by Roger Fife (Tricky, Antony and the Johnsons) in New York.
She enjoys sharing her story of perseverence and the value of following your purpose and passion.