Chris Anderson
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Chris Anderson

Virginia Beach, VA | Established. Jan 01, 2017

Virginia Beach, VA
Established on Jan, 2017
Duo Americana Singer/Songwriter

Calendar

Apr
26
Chris Anderson @ Cafe Montmartre

Reston, VA

Reston, VA

Jun
29
Chris Anderson @ Private Show

Virginia Beach, VA

Virginia Beach, VA

Oct
25
Chris Anderson @ Cafe Montmartre

Reston, VA

Reston, VA

Mar
09
Chris Anderson @ Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Frederick

Frederick, MD

Frederick, MD

Nov
30
Chris Anderson @ Cafe Montmartre

Reston, VA

Reston, VA

Music

Press


BMI songwriter E. Christine (Chris) Anderson (seated center) was the winner of the 2003 Baltimore Grammy Demo Contest presented by the DC Chapter of the Recording Academy and sponsored by BMI. The demo panel discussion and contest were part of a series of events held this spring during Grammy in the Streets, an outreach program for those currently in the music industry or seeking to enter the industry. This year’s event consisted of mentoring sessions, a panel on distribution, and the 2003 Baltimore Grammy Demo Panel Discussion and Contest.

Anderson’s winning song, “Their Leader” is from her Christian pop/rock release WAIT – it’s a musical!, a biblical musical based on the key figures in Luke and Matthew’s birth narratives. It features a variety of musical styles, from Latin to blues to pop and was written specifically for performance by bands and singers.

Panelists for the demo discussion spoke about what should be included in a good demo and served as judges for the critique contest. Anderson’s prize package included 10 hours of studio time at co-sponsor Omega Recording Studio, a gift certificate from Guitar Center, consulting time with an entertainment attorney and two artists managers, an on-air interview with Billy Zero on XM Radio’s Unsigned Station (including airplay), and various Grammy merchandise.

Hailing from the Washington, DC metro area, Anderson started writing WAIT – it’s a musical! while a student at Wesley Theological Seminary. A member of the Recording Academy and the Dramatists Guild of America, she has been playing electric guitar and harmonica in a church band for the past five years. She is a former worship leader, and has also been a player/singer in secular bands, including Metro West, Newtown Hope and Fable Fountain. In addition to songwriting and sitting in with DC area church and secular bands, she is currently acting as a consultant for smaller churches that want to start contemporary services. - Broadcast Music International (BMI)


Some people want songs that distract them from reality, others want songs that help them face it. “Harried Americans Roadshow” wants to do both.

“When we perform as just musicians, doing ‘just’ music, that is the Harried Americans band. ‘Harried Americans Roadshow’ includes our band ‘plus’ a comedian, a poet and a special musical guest. The ‘Harried Americans Roadshow’s’ comedian and poet are different every month,” said the founder, singer/songwriter Chris Anderson. How does she describe the theme of their show? “I guess our overall theme really is smarty-pants Americana. We ‘love’ to have fun at the expense of our national politicians! When we started doing the Roadshows, each show had a different theme. But over time as the show evolved, we stopped doing the entire show on one topic... unless there is an obvious cultural tie-in like July 4th or Mother's Day. Our guests each bring their own unique performance style and can perform whatever they choose. If I had to pick a theme for 2018 so far, I guess it would be ‘Assorted Americans.’ We've had the Hawaiian artists The Aloha Boys and pianist Bill Starks who has a very Delta style. All of our guests play Americana music, but some have musical roots in other countries -- so far this year we've had guests with roots in Brazil, Argentina and Ireland,” said the founder, Anderson who is bringing the show to Cafe Montmartre in Reston, on April 27.

The Harried American band, which is one part of the Roadshow, usually performs topical songs. “I have written songs that we perform on gerrymandering, the environment, health care, inept leadership, the state of Virginia and women's issues ... that is all I can think of right now. We also perform cover songs that we like. Many are familiar Baby Boomer era pop/rock songs that turn into sing-alongs... which we encourage and love,” said Anderson.

Anderson began playing guitar and harmonica in Northern Virginia clubs in the 80s, making the switch to church bands during the 90s. In 2003, she won a “GRAMMY in the Streets” award from the National Academy of Recording Arts & Sciences (NARAS) and Broadcast Music International (BMI) for a demo of her song “Their Leader” from her Christian Christmas project “WAiT – it’s a Musical!”

On April 27, the Roadshow will include a special guest: Argentinian guitarist/composer, Cristian Perez. “We chose Cristian Perez because he is an amazing local talent! We love to shine the spotlight on people from this area that we think our audience will like. And there is SO much talent in the D.C. area ... we invite people that we think are talented, professional and a good match for the show.

Our band is loosey-goosey, smarty-pants and fun. We want people who come to our shows to loosen-up and have a great and fun experience. So we pick artists that aren't like us musically, but would still appeal to our audience.”

Cristian has performed with many of the best musicians in the Washington D.C. area and played at numerous venues in the metropolitan area, such as Blues Alley, Kennedy Center Millennium Stage, Bohemian Caverns, Bethesda Blues & Jazz Supper Club and Twins Jazz. The Roadshow also features comedian Patty Bailey and poet Rod Deacey.

“We are a local D.C. area band just doing what we like. We usually have a full room ... but of course, we would love for more people to know about us, and to be more popular and well-known! One of the most fun things that has happened to me personally is that my daughter came to one of our shows in Maryland and posted a picture of us on her Facebook page. And one of her friends said, "That's your mom? I love that band!" That made me feel great - and I think it shocked my daughter! - Fairfax Times


Composed by E.Christine Anderson: Wait – It’s A Musical!

Label: Produced in affiliation with A.M. Tuneshop
Sound/Style: Contemporary musical theatre featuring varied styles

By Steve Morley

(UMCom)— This week’s entry in our ongoing feature of independent Christian artists isn’t an artist-driven project, but a one-act musical designed for churches or church-related events. Drawing from the Gospels of Luke and Matthew, Wait! traces the parallel conceptions of Jesus and John the Baptist while focusing on the human relationships of their parents-to-be.

Additionally, the musical imagines some of the smaller, behind-the-scenes details that never actually appear in Biblical accounts. First, we get a glimpse of King Herod as an egotistical yet fragile ruler who requires encouragement from a perfectly willing, brown-nosing underling in "Their Leader." With its keening violin and Jewish tonality, the song effectively sets the scene for the acts of God that follow.

The majority of songs are mild-mannered pop, though composer Anderson samples lightly from funk, blues and rock-edged fare to spice up the proceedings. Quite likely because these songs were written and produced by women, the contrast between Martians and Venusians—er, that is, men and women—is heightened. At times, it even seems that the male species gets the ever-so-slightly shorter end of the stick in these gender portrayals, coming off as distant, doubtful and slow to realize what their women already know, and more importantly, feel. (Of course, this could be a fairly accurate depiction, but don’t expect your humble reviewer—a card-carrying male—to possess such objectivity in this instance…)

True to the original story, the lyrics unpack the frailties of Zechariah and Joseph as well as their hopes and those of their mates. In particular, the lithe, Latin-tinged "Unafraid" works off of gender differences, featuring alternating twin monologues from Joseph and Mary. In the number, they ponder their individual futures as well as Mary’s supernatural peace in the face of being misunderstood.

In Zechariah’s case, he redeems himself early on in the jazzy, swaggering "I Want A Son," but not until Elizabeth has poured her heart on the table in "Where Are You?," a mid-tempo pop ballad in which she challenges him to be bolder. Humor is derived from Zechariah’s skeptical response to the angel Gabriel, who is painted here with more personality than spirit beings usually get credit for. After shutting the priest’s mouth in definitive fashion, he goes on to repeat the contents of his divine telegram: "I’ve already TOLD ya, you’ll have a son…and maybe you can teach him not to interrupt!" The modern vernacular that Anderson uses lends the work a lighthearted, modern flavor, though never to the detriment or disrespect of the heavenly goings-on and their ultimate importance to all believers past, present and future.

Though billed as a soundtrack, Wait!— as a yet-to-be-established work—perhaps serves best as a demonstration recording for theatrical groups and the like, falling short of the Technicolor effect of a Godspell or Jesus Christ Superstar. To be fair, though, it isn’t geared toward the secular market as those shows were. As a result, it sticks close to Biblical truth while still finding a few new angles to explore. Wait! – It’s A Musical offers a fresh spin on the faithfulness of God’s promises and the futility of trying to alter His agenda—an inspiring message that, whenever it happens to arrive, is always right on time.

Steve Morley is a freelance music journalist living in College Grove, Tenn.

This review was developed by UMC.org, the official online ministry of the United Methodist Church. - UMC.org


"...an amazing musician/songwriter 
and performer... she is sure to 
knock your socks off! "
- Jean Bayou, Past President, 
Songwriters' Association of Washington

"Great singer/songwriter - really great guitar and harmonica player!!"
- Mary Ann Redmond, 
Award winning performer, 
Co-writer "Love Me Anyway"
 (recorded by Celine Dion)

"...The Wall...a brilliant song masterfully conveyed ... "
- Ron Goad, Vice President 
Songwriters Association of Washington Musician’s Guide 
Through the Legal Jungle -


Photos

Bio

Songwriter E. Christine (Chris) Anderson plays guitar and harmonica, and is an occasional bass player or percussionist. She writes refreshingly quirky songs, featuring fierce guitar leads and complex harmonica riffs.  Her favorite themes come from the evening news. She tackles oil spills, dysfunctional political leaders and propaganda with poignancy or humor -  her evocative songs are delivered with wit, wisdom and plain ol’ fun.

Chris performs as a singer/songwriter and is also founder, managing member and producer of The Harried Americans Band and The Harried Americans RoadShow, an Americana, Contemporary Folk & Roots variety show featuring musical guests, poetry and comedy. The Harried Americans perform regularly in Northern Virginia, and at Maryland and District of Columbia special events, festivals and fairs. 

In 2018, Chris won GOLD in the Mid-Atlantic Song Contest (Open Category) for her song “Just Change The Boundary (The Gerrymander Song.)"  This song was also featured in a documentary, “GerryRIGGED, Turning Democracy on Its Head,” produced by The Community Idea Stations and OneVirginia2021. The show has aired on public broadcasting stations throughout Virginia.   Chris' klezmer-esque pop tune "Their Leader" from her project "WAiT -  It's a Musical!" won a Grammy in the Streets demo contest sponsored by the National Academy of Recording Arts & Sciences (NARAS) and Broadcast Music International (BMI) in 2003. She subsequently created rehearsal materials, a radio show, accompaniment tracks, and live-stage performance products for the musical. The show has been nationally broadcast in its entirety on XM Radio, with live stage productions throughout the USA and in Australia, Austria, Germany, India, Nigeria, The Philippines and South Africa.

Her releases include WAiT - It's a Musical! (2003), Ladies Done Waiting (2013), Gonna Get Through It (2014) and Just Change The Boundary (2018.) Chris is affiliated with performing rights organizations BMI.  Her songs are available for sale through iTunes, CDBaby and other online music retailers.

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“Chris’ songs were lively, poignant, and funny by turns. Her presence and her musicianship kept the showcase audience both engaged and entertained.”
– Tres Seaver, Fredericksburg Songwriters’ Showcase

“Chris! What an awesome Friday night with you all!  Thank you thank you! … I will definitely keep you in mind for any upcoming events — and I will recommend you to my network. – Katherine White, Program Director for Network NoVA

Chris Anderson shines. Few performing songwriters have mastered the art of being an excellent songwriter, guitar player and singer. Chris Anderson proves that it can be done, seemingly without effort. Todd C. Walker, Frederick Acoustic Music Enterprise