Photo by Elias Tahan
This interview was featured in the 6 Year Anniversary issue of Sinical Magazine. Print copies can be purchased here.
Sinical Magazine: What was it like for you to grow up in Texas?
Chrysta Bell: I was born and raised in the wonderful city of San Antonio. My family’s unusual vocations provided a pretty dynamic childhood. My mother and step father owned and ran the largest recording studio in South Texas and my father was a commercial hot air balloon pilot and collector of unusual classic cars(think two headed Pontiacs and vintage fire engines). My artistic passions were nurtured and I was raised to believe my possibilities in life were as vast and bright as the Texas sky. I look back and realize how fortunate I was to have that experience growing up.
Sinical Magazine: When did you first realize you wanted to make music?
Chrysta Bell: My mother is a singer and we have always sung together, since I was toddler. I can’t remember a time when I was not certain that music was my destiny.
Photo by Kristin Cofer
Sinical Magazine: Who are your musical influences?
Chrysta Bell: Growing up I was a big fan of The Eurythmics. I also loved Prince, Julie London, Michael Jackson and Marvin Gaye.
Sinical Magazine: What is your songwriting process like?
Chrysta Bell: Usually there is a melody that starts dancing in my mind from seemingly out of nowhere. There are often words attached to the melody to give me an idea of what the song is about, though that often evolves quite a bit before the song is actually born. A vast number of my songs originate while I am driving in my car alone.
Photo by Elias Tahan
Sinical Magazine: What is your favorite venue and city you’ve performed at?
Chrysta Bell: I have been ridiculously blessed to play in tremendous theaters, clubs and on festival stages all over the world for the past decade. Each have certain special qualities as one can imagine. Right now one that is coming to mind is the stage we played during the music festival in Ravello, Italy. The backdrop was the Amalfi Coast. It was over the top storybook perfection.
Sinical Magazine: Can you talk about your collaboration with David Lynch?
Chrysta Bell: I consider every moment I spend with David to be a gift. He’s an exceptionally heart centered, compassionate, highly intelligent and highly productive person. Also, the most dedicated artist I know. Working with him has so many positive associations for me. We have a musical and personal chemistry that is very fulfilling and rewarding and in my experience, rare. We are 16 years strong in our collaboration and friendship and I hope it goes at least 20 more.
Photo by Sasha Samsonova
Sinical Magazine: You’ve been described in the past as David Lynch’s Muse. What does the word “Muse” mean to you?
Chrysta Bell: In the most basic sense it’s someone who inspires or facilitates creative expression.
Sinical Magazine: How does it feel to be a cast member on David Lynch’s new Twin Peaks series?
Chrysta Bell: I’m ecstatic.
Photo by Elias Tahan
Sinical Magazine: What projects are you working on for 2017?
Chrysta Bell: Early in 2017 I will be releasing the music video for Beat the Beat, a song from the EP David Lynch and I released October 7, 2016. Shortly thereafter I will be launching the release of my second full- length record called “We Dissolve”, with production by John Parish, the marvelous producer and band mate of P.J. Harvey. The album was recorded in Bristol, UK, and has guest appearances by Adrian Utley of Portishead, Geoff Downes of Yes and Stephen O’Malley of cult drone metal band Sunn O))). The music is cinematic, sultry and soulful, with focus on strong songwriting and arrangements, no fluff or rampant over production. I am extremely proud of the record. At some point in 2017 Twin Peaks will air. That will be a trip. I’m brimming with anticipation along with the rest of the world. I have a feeling it’s going to be a game changing show (again!) and I think overall 2017 is going to be a pretty fantastic year.|