Chris Stockwell is a international recording/touring, Contemporary Resophonic Guitarist(Dobro) and Lap steel player. Recognized for his adherence to the bluegrass music tradition and branching out into playing many other genres of music, such as Blues, Country, American and Rock styles.
Growing up in the West Virginia mountains, Chris Stockwell started singing at an early age and took up the Dobro in 2002. Since then, he has performed with some of the best in the business at bluegrass festivals and concert halls throughout the United States. Notably, Chris was the Dobro player with The Rarely Herd for 8 years. He also had the opportunity to do a week long tour with Lou Reid and Carolina, perform on Mountain Stage with Susan Werner, and play on the soundtrack to the motion picture Stuck in the Past with Honi Deaton & Dream. In recent years, Chris has toured Norway with The Darrell Webb Band and played shows with West Virginia music icons Ron Sowell, Johnny Staats, John Inghram, and Butch Osborne,Step into The Blue. And currently a member of the acoustic hybrid/rock band Common Houses.
Currently based in Summersville, West Virginia, Chris is highly regarded for his teaching abilities as well as his musicianship. In addition to offering private lessons, for the past five years, he has taught Dobro at Allegheny Echoes music camp in Marlinton, West Virginia. He has presented workshops at several bluegrass festivals Including The Minnesota Old time Bluegrass festival and The Roanoke Fiddle Festival. Chris has also stayed busy as a session musician with 37 recording credits on various bluegrass, roots, and folk CDs.
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- Dustin McCray - The Song That You Sing (2016)
- Clinton Collins - Around the Sun (2016)
- Micah & Mark Atkinson - Land of Broken Angels (2015)
- Andrew Adkins - Wooden Heart (2016)
- Laurel River Line - Turn Away From Sin (2015)
- Tyler Williams - Heart Over Mind (2015)
- Levi Douglas - Concrete Towers (2012)
- Step Into The Blue
- David Lee Mayfield (2016)
- Matt Mullins And the Bringdowns
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Interview with Chris Stockwell
Q: Analog or digital and why?
A: Analog. Nothing will ever compare to the sound of analog. It's warmer, has more character and feeling than Digital will ever convey.
Q: What's your 'promise' to your clients?
A: I'll never give less than my best.
Q: What do you like most about your job?
A: Getting to meet so many people who are in the music club!
Q: What questions do customers most commonly ask you? What's your answer?
A: Can you make it sound like this? Depends on the recording. Can you make it by tomorrow? I can try. Can you fix the vocals/guitars/other so it sounds better? Depends on the recording again, but there is a way for almost everything.
Q: What's the biggest misconception about what you do?
A: The instrument i use doesn't have a hubcap on it. Just incase someone was really curious...
Q: What questions do you ask prospective clients?
A: What do you want from this song? What is you favorite artist, album, song? How does this song feel to you?
Q: What advice do you have for a customer looking to hire a provider like you?
A: Have a clear idea what you want, maybe even a song that sounds like the one you want to be done. The more information you get me, the better the end product will sound.
Q: If you were on a desert island and could take just 5 pieces of gear, what would they be?
A: My Dobro. (with it's case) Do accessories such as picks and slides count as gear?
Q: What was your career path? How long have you been doing this?
A: I've had the passion to make music for as long as i can remember. Since i was in High School, I've been on the path to have a music career. I've been playing professionally since 2004. but I've been playing music since 1992 when i got my first drum kit.
Q: How would you describe your style?
A: As a Dobro player, The instrument itself tends to get classified as a Bluegrass or Country "only" instrument. But I've tried my best to take the instrument into other lands. So i guess you could say i'm a contemporary resophonic guitarist.
Q: Which artist would you like to work with and why?
A: Ryan Adams would be a solid pick, i think. The guy is a tank full of creativity. A walking songbook and a master of his craft.
Q: Can you share one music production tip?
A: Less is More and get in tune.
Q: What type of music do you usually work on?
A: Bluegrass,Country, Americana,Blues. But i love a musical challenge. Willing to try to record just about anything.
Q: What's your strongest skill?
A: The tracking performance of the Instrument.
Q: What do you bring to a song?
A: Giving my best to give the particular song a flow and feeling that it deserves. Every song is different and I think the most important thing is to figure out what that songs needs to be, after that, everything goes easier. Really focusing on adding parts to a song the reinforces the mood and overall quality and story of what it is saying.
Q: What's your typical work process?
A: Depends on the type of work I'm doing (editing, mix, master, recording etc.). Usually I talk to the client as much so I can to get the clear idea what are client wishes and vision of the project. After that I do a demo or a preview of what the song is going to be like so the client can see if I am on the right track. If the client is satisfied, I continue with work and I send the client one more export before the final so there is time for final touches and changes if there is a need for that.
Q: Tell us about your studio setup.
A: I'm using a basic setup for over dubbing mostly. Using Adobe Audition CC for my DAW on a Dell Optiplex 755 Windows 7 PC. Using the Blue Yeti Pro microphone and a Scarlett 2i2 with a AKG C-1000 Microphone.
Q: What other musicians or music production professionals inspire you?
A: For musicians,It's a broad spectrum of inspirations. It ranges from Bela Fleck to Ray Charles to Pearl Jam. I'm inspired by artists who play and create music from the heart and strive to put out the best music they can. As for producers, I'm really into Gary Paczosa, Phil Spector, Brian Wilson, Jimmy Iovine, and lately Dave Cobb.
Q: Describe the most common type of work you do for your clients.
A: Most common are instrument tracking, editing, mixing and mastering jobs, but there are request for recording additional instruments, arraigning songs etc.