Chris Freund moved to Nashville from Neosho, MO in February 2012. He grew up playing gospel and country music, and even though he primarily plays country music, he has also recently started playing some Blues and 80’s Rock music as well. When Chris isn’t working on his own music, you can usually find him playing keyboard and singing background vocals in downtown Nashville with the mother-daughter duo, The Taylors.
I recently had the privilege of meeting Chris through a mutual acquaintance that was very excited about connecting us with each other, and I must say that I personally am very happy that we were brought together. Chris’ endearing and enthusiastic personality shines through from the moment you meet him. In this interview, we get a peek into Chris’ positive attitude and how he manages to stay balanced in his personal and professional life. The way Chris plays keyboard, mixed with the lyrics to his single “My Past in Front of Me” make for an emotional and touching song.
What’s your favorite part about being a musician?
I love the interaction with people. For me, it’s all about the connection with people. I want to see smiles on faces; see people singing along. If I can help someone forget their problems, even just for a few minutes, then I’m doing my job.
What’s the most challenging part (to you) about being a musician?
Being on stage is the easy part! The hardest part is the setting up and tearing down of equipment, the driving to and from the shows, and the stress of making a living at music. Being a musician on stage is only a fraction of being an actual “musician”. So much happens behind the scenes, away from public view.
Is it challenging to have a real social life outside of performing? What do you do to keep the balance? What do you do in your personal downtime?
It can be a challenge at times. My wife, who is my biggest supporter, works during the day. I work primarily at night. My friends all seem to be in the music business, so if I don’t see them, it’s probably because we are all working around town at the same time! I try to have at least one night a week off to spend with my wife. I love cooking, and watching baseball (Go Cards!).
What do you consider your biggest accomplishment (so far) in music/what has been the coolest experience you’ve had in your career so far?
I’ve gotten to open for some pretty cool artists (Justin Moore, Joe Diffie, Kentucky Headhunters) and I’ve gotten to play for some great artists. My biggest accomplishment, however, has been getting into the studio to record my original music. That’s when people get to see the real me; my thoughts on life and what is important. I’m so excited to get the recording completed!
What is one piece of advice you’d like to give other artists that are out there trying to make it?
Don’t worry about trying to make a major label as soon as you get to town. Work on your singing, your instrument, your songwriting; whatever you do, always do your best and never settle for just getting things done. Trust your gut. Trust God. Have a plan (a 5-year plan is best) and take the smaller goals just as seriously as the big goals. Never. Stop. Dreaming. Never. Stop. Working.
What projects are you currently working on?
I am working on recording four original songs in the studio. When those are complete, I will have five songs available as an E.P. on my website and at my shows.
What’s one thing you want your fans/future fans to know about you?
I’m just like you! I have my faults, weaknesses and difficulties. I get to make a living playing music because of you. Feel free to talk to me at shows; ask for pictures. Let’s interact!
What’s your favorite way to connect with fans?
I have all the social mediums, but I look forward to actual interaction with people. Typing conversations are good; in-person ones are even better!
How long have you been performing/playing music?
I’ve been playing piano since I was three, and chording since I was eight. I picked up other instruments along the way, but keys are my main instrument.
Who are your biggest supporters?
My wife Rachel is without a doubt my biggest supporter, followed by my parents and friends. I’m so incredibly lucky to have them all in my corner. They believe in me, even when my self-doubt almost takes control of me. They keep me going.
If you could perform with one artist or band, who would it be?
Brad Paisley. I love his playing and singing, and I love his views on music and life itself. He seems like the kind of guy you could hang out with and enjoy a good brew (iced tea or beer) and discussion.
Where do you see your career in 10 years?/What are your goals for the future in music?
I see myself playing my original music and singing with my band. That’s the ultimate goal. Large crowd, small crowd, whoever will listen. The goal is to make an impact with my music and help people. If I can do that, big record contract or not, I’ll consider that a success.
You can catch Chris Freund performing in downtown Nashville each week with The Taylors at Layla’s 9pm-1am on Tuesdays, and Wednesdays 2-6 pm. He also performs at The Wheel on Thursdays 6-10pm and Sundays 2-6:15pm at Crossroads.
I’m very excited to see what else is in store for Chris Freund in the future. I’m looking forward to hearing his newest music released on his upcoming project “The State I’m In”.
“My Past in Front of Me”