BIO / DISCOGRAPHY
Chris Way is a New York City based singer, songwriter & guitarist. He's been making a wide-ranging mix of lo-fi pop, soul-folk, classical guitar, ambient, & improvisational guitar works since about 2000.
Chris started out with a Yamaha keyboard around '98, trying to teach himself via Bartok's Mikrokosmos. He switched instruments shortly after, teaching himself acoustic guitar beginning in 2001 in Gainesville, FL. He's been composing, recording and producing his own music since from within various bedroom recording studios up and down the east coast. Under the name Buried Branches, he focused first on acoustic pop & folk, releasing four records: "Here Are Some Faces For You" (2003, CD), "Whelk's Milk" (2003, CD), "Ghosts" (2004, CD), and a compilation of songs & B-sides called "Some Songs, Vol. 1: 2001-2004" (2004, CD, re-released 2010), as well as a tape of 4 track demos that date back to about 2000-2002.
In 2009 he released "Needle Out" (2009, CD & iTunes), a more raw and direct -- but just as melodic -- set of ten songs. 2010 saw another change in direction with the release of a collection of lo-fi, fully improvised and semi-improvised works entitled "Los Caracoles: Improvisations for Solo Guitar & Voice, Vol. 1" (2010, CD release only).
Following this, Chris studied for a year under classical guitarist and composer Alison Carvalho, a fruitful experience which allowed him to sharpen his classical guitar technique & brought him closer to guitar playing as a whole-body experience. Under Carvalho he increased his focus on structure, space, and beautiful tone.
His latest release is "The Body Begins" (2012, CD & via Bandcamp). This record, his seventh full-length, was inspired by conversations with massage therapist Gwen Guarino about composing music inspired by bodywork that's different from what's currently on the market. The result was something other than music to accompany massage: it became a collection of seven semi-ambient pieces that can be listened to as background, or focused on as developing, slowly-melodic music. Each composition is a long, spacious, minimalistic, subtly-melodic meditation, made to bring you to the present moment and open you to it. This is music inspired by the body: by the way emotion is stored in the body, discovered in the body, released from the body.
Despite his shifts in theme and sound, at the bottom of everything Chris makes is melody. For him, coming up with the right hook trumps just about everything else that happens in the composing process. As classical pianist Tania Stavreva writes: "The common thread through C. Way's music style is simple: guitar, melody and emotion. I love the way he adds color and improvisation like elements which often interact from tender folk-pop to classical guitar rhapsodies." His ultimate aim is to create music that feels and sounds in every way as if it had been improvised, without actually being improvised at all.
Chris' work has been played on WFMU radio & on various online sites and blogs such as www.moteldemoka.com. Chris has also worked with the talented Jess Hotchkiss, aka Oh Be Joyful, on collaborative projects.
Thanks so much for listening to and supporting my work.