Lance Christopher
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Lance Christopher

Nashville, Tennessee, United States | INDIE

Nashville, Tennessee, United States | INDIE
Band Country Singer/Songwriter

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Lance Christopher began to craft his career as a songwriter and a musician while he was in his teens. His time in the military expanded his experiences and he met the love of his life. He went on to organize and play as a minister of music for a local church. During this time he wrote many songs both Christian country and congregational. All of this prepared him for this impressive release. The CD release is also a bonus for computer users. It includes multi-media material, photos, MP3's ready for use, bonus songs, and more along with the full CD music presentation.

The songwriting and performances on "Saved by a woman" reveals the remarkable talent of Lance Christopher. I was immediately engrossed in the performance. Here are some of my favorites from the disc:

The CD opens with "Baby We're Gone", a nice little tune about taking a tropical vacation. Lance's songwriting skills are immediately apparent as he stirs up mental images in the listener of the scenarios described in the lyrics. Keyboard, guitar, bass and drums make up a an intricate rock influenced country backing. Notable is the instrumental minutia in the background that adds to the texture of the song as they build with every verse. Production values are very high quality on this CD.

The title song, "Saved By A Woman", is a tribute to his wife, Michelle. This pretty song features violin, slide guitar, and mandolin as supporting instruments to well placed guitar. Lance's voice shows a softer side that adapts perfectly to the message of the tune.

"It's Been A Long Time Coming" tells the story of a convict's release. A slow pretty song with acoustic guitar and slide acoustic guitar building the backdrop. Lance's storytelling voice grips the listener and pulls them into the song.

The medium paced country rocker, "You Were Too Cool", has air play written all over it. Twangy guitar kicks off the song underpinned by pedal steel, acoustic guitar, and perfectly balanced and articulating bass and drums. Lance drives the vocals with enthusiasm and rides on top of male backing vocals.

"Echoes Of Emily" ties a bluegrass feel to a country tune. Lance tells the story of a beautiful daughter making the struggle of a single parent's effort all worth while.

The jazz influenced country song, "Heaven Gets Down", invites the listener to appreciate the imagery created by Lance's passionate and sincere voice. A nice slide resonator solo takes the song out.

The beautiful, "She Lost Him In The War", is a slow tune featuring Lance telling the story of a soldier who has difficulty adapting to his civilian life.

The production quality, the look and feel of the disc and multi media materials, and the quality of the performance belies the freshman release of Lance Christopher and is more in keeping with a journeyman's peak performance. I highly recommend giving Lance a listen. Drop by his web site and listen to some samples and order up this great performance for your CD collection. Listen to Lance's message of peace, his warmth of presentation, and enjoy a CD you will listen to again and again. Keep an eye on this performer for an opportunity to hear him live!

~ STEVE EKBLAD, AudioGrid.com - STEVE EKBLAD, AudioGrid.com


Tennessee–based country newcomer, Lance Christopher, didn’t have to dig deep for inspiration for his debut release, Saved By A Woman (Torn Sky Records). He just prodded his memory. He then confronted some home truths, and, when realized, thanked God – the answer was closer than he thought.

"It was some time in 1995," tells the former military linguist and serving pastor. "I was on my knees praying for my congregation, when a picture came vividly to my mind’s eye. I saw myself looking about 15 years older. I was in pretty bad shape."

Then, as the singer who once ministered in Russia to serving prisoners recalls, he saw himself, beaten by despondency, alone in a low-rent motel room, with only a battered guitar balancing against a nightstand for company.

"My eyes were closed and I looked real strung out," recalls Christopher in his liner notes, "and I had a gun to my head. I was ready to pull the trigger." And then it happened. He heard a voice. It was close. It was in the room. "That would have been you without your wife," said the voice. According to Christopher, he was on his knees; his mouth was dry and he was shaking. It was a moving experience, one which claimed a renewed respect for his wife.

So much, he wrote a song and dedicated this album to her.
And while Christopher can thank his "voice" and a stand-by-her-man wife for the title track, the remaining 11 mostly self-penned tunes take their roots in living out the songwriter’s life.

Tracks like "Baby We’re Gone," a tale of wished-for coastal escapes, "You Were Too Cool" with its childhood infatuations, and the personal "I Defy Gravity," telling of confrontation with major illness, all allow this faith-driven singer room to share and show his obvious talent.

And it’s a talent attracting some interest. Christopher’s web site shows he’s well connected. At his "Writers’ Shack," he’s developed a haven for sharing lyrics and insight into today’s country music writer. It’s there, writers including Woody Bradshaw, Dennis Van Hove, and Pamela Michelle Watkins (Christopher’s wife), share biographies, videos and ambitions.

Christopher, a solid guy with a voice to match, shares lyrical honesty on his album laced with modern influences. Listen out for the softly rocked motivator "Take Life By The Wheel," then, there’s a tune inspired by Christopher’s battle with cancer, the religious-flavored, "The Poetry In My Emotions," and a song dedicated to his 17-year marriage, the romantic, "Morning Mist On My Heart".

Besides a healthy song quota, the album also comes with an enhanced video, viewable from your computer. Christopher shares his bio, MP3s and bonus tracks, and an up-close and personal video, along with a direct link to his web site. All in all, it makes for a value-rich album – one inspired by a good woman, an invisible presence, and some well honed truths.

~ GEORGE PEDEN, CountryReview.com ~ - George Peden, CountryReview.com


By Brooke Welu

Inspiration; For me, inspiration is a very interesting topic when discussing or thinking about music, especially other people’s music. I’ve always been fascinated by what inspires musicians because it allows me connect with them thus deepen my appreciation of what they’ve created no matter what the genre or subject matter may be. As a cancer survivor, Lance Christopher attributes his initial interest in music from the influence of both his parents. However, his inspiration for writing and performing music comes from the strength he found while surviving his life threatening illness.

If given the opportunity I have always made a habit of reading an artist’s lyrics before or while listening to their music for the first time. In my opinion, lyrics to songs should be written with the same sincerity as the words found in one’s journal. Without that heart and soul, the song(s) will always be missing something. It is evident that Lance writes and composes music in a very pure and honest manner. His music tells his story, mostly of hope, love and survival. After reading his lyrics, I listened to all six songs provided in his press kit which were very insightful as they highlighted his wide vocal range and talent playing guitar. His country sound and Christian lyrics are not something I am accustomed to hearing a lot in the Northeast but Lance’s vocals are rich and comforting while accompanied by his soothing guitar melodies.

There is no doubt in my mind that Lance’s music is extremely thoughtful and growing in popularity as it has already proven to have attracted quite a following in and around Nashville, TN. Not to mention the international exposure he received while touring through both Japan and Russia . In order to learn more about Lance and his music I suggest visiting his website, www.lancechristopher.com , as it is a wealth of knowledge and definitely worth a gander. Even if you are not interested in Christian country music, check it out to get ideas for your own website. It seems a bit busy but Lance has done a great job using his website to connect with his fans. Some aspects to note are his consistently updated blog, the songwriting tutorials available for other musicians/fans learn and network, and the links he’s provided to other sites that are of interest to him. Bottom line, I think successful musicians are the ones who appreciate the support of their fans thus make sure to find a way to connect with them and I feel Lance’s website demonstrates this commitment and appreciation.

Lastly, I’ll be the first to admit that I am not too familiar with the Christian country music genre or its popularity in the Northeast but if this is something of interest to you, I am sure you will enjoy Lance’s music. He sings from the heart and most times that is half the battle! - Northeast In-Tune


Discography

ON TORN SKY RECORDS

RE-CONSTRUCTION (01/01/2007)

An acoustic collection of songs that tell what Lance Christopher discovered about God in the hard places.

SAVED BY A WOMAN (01/01/05)

Lance Christopher's debut release on Torn Sky Records

Photos

Bio

"His sound is...country, but more intimate: His performances often strip down to mandolin, acoustic guitar, and bass, in spare productions that recall Rick Rubin's work with Johnny Cash. In these settings, his voice holds the spotlight: It is conversational yet elastic, masculine yet delicately textured, in the fashion of early Merle Haggard."

--Robert L. Doerschuk, "Artists In The Limelight" A&R Registry, May/June 2006

"There is a truth and sincerity in Lance’s music that is very rare. Heartfelt emotions are projected into every song. What’s special about this talented singer/songwriter is that… you don’t only hear him, you believe him!

The songs are based upon the simple principles of honest living, in both the good times and the bad. His genuine, good-hearted spirit reaches far beyond his music… it’s evident to all he comes in contact with! I know that he will be (and already is) a blessing to many!"

--Amber Patterson, HMG Nashville, Power Source Inc.

"When I listen to music, I like songs that stand out because they are different than the same ole stuff on the pile. (Lance's music)...has a funky factor to it that is unlike anything on the radio... Left me wanting more!"

-- Keith Allen, Midwest Country Music Director, The Moose 94.5, Saginaw, MI

“Lyrical honesty... Obvious talent!”

-- George Peden, music critic for CountryReview.com

“Remarkable talent!”

-- Steve Ekblad, music critic for AudioGrid.com

LANCE CHRISTOPHER

Lance Christopher’s music is driven by an earthy blend of traditional sound and pop sensibilities. His songs are carried by rich imagery, supple vocals, and unforgettable melodies.

Dennis VanHove speaking on behalf of indie label Torn Sky Records said of him, "Lance Christopher is simply a great artist. He has been a minister... A soldier... A businessman... Well, let’s just say he’s lived a lot, and through it all he has always been a songwriter.

I think it is his realness and connectedness to the people around him that makes his art so accessible. Lance just genuinely loves people and welcomes the opportunity to bring them into his creative world. We are excited to be a part of sharing what he does with audiences the world over!"

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MUSICAL DNA
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I asked him about what influenced his unique brand of music, and he had this to say, “I have always loved vivid lyrics and great melodies. Singer/Songwriters like Johnny Cash... Roger Miller... Jim Croce... Neil Diamond... As a kid, I used to listen to their songs and just get lost in them. Their music resonated with life in all its highs and lows. I was a teenager in Hawaii, and back then I bought a cheap guitar because it looked cool and was a lot more portable than a keyboard, and I started writing songs.

At that time, I was working part time at the Camp Smith riding stables. I would clean out the stalls so I could ride the trails. The music they played around the barn and tack room was a mix of Alabama, Hank Williams, Jr., and VanHalen. So, I had this cool fusion of country, pop, and rock all bottled up inside of me.

When I was strumming my guitar, I never thought about the kind of songs I was writing... I just sat there on the beach or under a tree and let the songs come out the way that felt best. To this day, I believe the song is king, and I try to let the song go where it feels right.”

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A BONAFIDE "NAVY BRAT"
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Lance's father, Earl, was career navy and Lance had this to say about his childhood, "I was a bona fide navy brat. I lived on military bases all over. We really did move a lot, but music was a constant. My mama sang all the time, and she had a song for every occasion... She still does!

On my father's side, it was mountain music. He loved to sing the old songs from his child hood in Alabama and Tennessee. The lyrics to those songs would have the whole family laughing and dancing.

Although my dad is a huge bluegrass fan, he also had music by folks like the Beach Boys, ABBA, and Roger Whitaker. When he would get home from being out at sea, he always brought back a couple of new albums. He would unload his big sea bag and I would quietly make off with them. I guess somehow it made me feel connected to him. I remember sitting cross-legged on my bedroom floor listening to his music over and over.”

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THE UNITED STATES, JAPAN, AND RUSSIA
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A creative singer/songwriter, Lance has played everything from rodeos, churches, bars, and prisons to festivals, back porches and more.

He has shared his talent both in the US and abroad.

His recent tour to Japan was a special blessing, and he has even travelled to Russia playing to large crowds in Kazan, in the Muslim Autonomous Region of Tartarstan. While there he received a special invitation to share with the inmates of the main prison in Kazan.

Lance said, "That