Chris J. Arellano y Nuevo Americana
Warmly recieved by the Norteno Music Community and fans alike, Chris Arellano's self titled debut album tells the story of his life through music. Rooted in the Norteno music of his New Mexico upbringing, with distinct influences of Country, Blues and Jazz from his days in Nashville and Los Angeles, this album is a true Americana offering. Two cuts from the album held #1 postions on New Mexico Radio Charts and Cuentas Que Te Vas and Puno de Tierra were respectively the #6 and #3 most requested songs of the year in 2015. This CD project also recieved a Los 15 Grandes De Nuevo Mexico Music Award from the New Mexico Latin Music Academy http://newmexlma.com/. Early 2016 finds the album with nine seperate nominations for New Mexico Hispano Music Association Awards. Including Songwriter of the Year, Artist of the Year, and the Rising Star Award. www.nmhma.org
To understand Chris' unique musical perspective and sound its best to start with his early influences growing up in Costilla, New Mexico part of a musical family. When Chris was 8 he joined his father Jake (guitarist singer/songwriter) his mother Henrietta (vocalist) and his 11 year old brother Rodney (bass) in the family band. The family played music together throughout Northern New Mexico and Colorado until the loss of his father Jake when Chris was 12. During the sad period following his fathers death Chris immersed himself in his fathers instrument of choice, the guitar, and his love affair with stringed instruments began.
After high school Chris headed to Los Angeles to study at Muscians Instiute (GIT). At the age of 20 he was the winner of the Nashville Spotlight Talent Contest that allowed him to perform at the Grand Ol' Opry. Chris and his brother Rodney traveled to Nashville together and decided to visit the Bluebird Cafe. Due to a last minute cancellation they landed a spot to perform, the response was fantastic and they were asked to play there regularly. They moved to Nashville and formed the band Drifters Wind. The band soon caught the attention of Sony Producer Blake Chancey and James Stroud the President and Producer of Dreamworks Records. James Stroud signed the band to a recording development deal. Through the Dreamworks relationship the band wrote and recorded with some of Nashville's top session writers and musicians, but the Drifters winds recording project was never released.
Chris' ability to play multiple stringed instruments kept him busy as a Nashville session musician and Producer. In 1996 Chris and drummer Kenny Cox of Drifters Wind, auditioned and ended up touring with Steve Forberts Warner Bros. release of Rocking Horse Head Tour. Playing on Premier stages across the country and appearing on televison in New York City.
In 2001 Chris moved to Oregon and opened MusiCafe Rock School where he found a passion for teaching music, working with students of all ages. Chris is a highly sought after music instructor in the Pacific Northwest and in 2012 he began a yearly summer music camp in his New Mexico hometown. Chris enjoys giving back to his community through volunteerism, teaching songwriting, instrumentation, and recording classes through the local School District.
In 2013 Chris and his band Cascade Rye were featured on Fox TVs, Good Morning Austin during their short tour in Texas. Cascade Rye was also featured on The Northwest Singer Songwriter Sessions on Oregon Public Broadcasting.
With his daughter Jayden, (Carousel/Jayden's Song) poised to spread her wings and fly upon her June 2016 graduation from high school, Chris knew that he would soon have the freedom to chase his musical dreams again. It was time to record a full length album, something that honored every step of his journey so far, and most importantly to honor his fathers memory by recording his rearranged version of Cuentas Que Te Vas a song that Jake Arellano had written and recorded when Chris was a boy.
2016 finds Chris taking steps on this new portion of his journey, sharing the live version of his first CD, touring venues throughout the western parts of the US. Chris also continues to write music that speaks to him and stories from along the way. Maybe something you will hear live somewhere near you in 2016, maybe something you will hear on his next album...