Get to know Chris Hutton and his single “Crossfire.” It is part of his EP, “Oxygen” which was released this past Summer.
Hutton’s addictive new single, “Crossfire,” is the anthemic single for anyone who has ever experienced unrequited love. The hooky pop track radiates with electric energy from the very first vocal lick, crafting a powerful emotional punch in the gut. A glimpse into Hutton’s personal life, listeners can feel the ache and longing within the virtuosic melody.
It’s packed with glam-rock energy and synthy dance arrangements that pound along with the heartbeat in all of us. “Crossfire” is a bittersweet story about being in love with the right person at the wrong time, and the dizzying melody and powerhouse vocals add intensity to a track that weaves between emotions with an uncanny resilience. Check out Chris Hutton’s emotionally explosive “Crossfire,” out now.
Connect With Chris Hutton Online Here:
Twitter: @Chris Hutton
Learn more about Chris Hutton in the following All Access interview:
Thank you for your time! So what does a typical day look like for you lately?
Lately, I haven’t really had a typical day. I keep busy with a lot of different things, so on any given day, I could be at a music studio, a film set, teaching a voice student, or writing music at home, it just depends on the day. Whenever people ask me what I’ve been up to recently, I’ve started saying: “I’m doing lots of things, I’m just not sure what any of them are!”
Now that we are in the latter half of the year, how has 2019 treated you? What are some goals that you have had for yourself this year? How close are you to reaching them or did you already? What are you already looking forward to in 2020?
This year has been hard but good. I graduated college in May, and I didn’t expect to feel as lost as I did afterword. I think a lot of people have this idea of: “OK, I’ll go to college, and after I’m done, everything will make sense, I’ll know exactly what I’m doing with my life, and I’ll be a fully-formed adult who knows how career, relationships, insurance and taxes all work!” And none of that happened for me. When I graduated, I felt just as frantic as I had when I was in school, but eventually I realized that that feeling of not knowing what you’re doing never really goes away. As Calvin’s dad says from the comic strip Calvin and Hobbes: “I wouldn’t have been in such a rush to be an adult if I realized the whole thing was going to be ad-libbed.” I’ve definitely been ad-libbing life this year, but I think it’s been really good for me. I’m learning a lot about myself and about life, and all of it is making me trust God and learn to have confidence in the craziness.
As far as goals go, one of the biggest ones was releasing “Oxygen”. It’s my first EP and music video, so that’s definitely a big goal accomplished! We’re working on Part II of the project right now, so that’s the next goal, and I’m really stoked to share it with people. I have no idea what next year is going to bring, but I’m excited to see what happens!
Growing up, how important was music in your life? Can you recall the moment when you decided that you wanted to be a musician? Was it an easy or difficult choice to make?
Music was most of my life growing up. My mom was a music teacher, and my sister is a professional performer, so I was always surrounded my music. I started playing violin when I was 5 and singing in choir when I was 8. I wrote my first song when I was 14, and that’s when I knew I wanted to be a musician for the rest of my life. It wasn’t even a choice really, I just knew that was what I needed to do. There was never any other option.
Was there ever a time when you thought about doing something else? If you weren’t a musician today, what else could you see yourself doing? Would you be as fulfilled in life?
I’ve thought about doing other things, but never seriously. From time to time when I’m discouraged, I’ll imagine what it would be like to have a more typical job, but that only lasts for about ten seconds. I can’t really say what I would be doing if I wasn’t a musician, or if I would be fulfilled in life doing something else because I’ve never done anything else. I don’t think that music alone fulfills my entire life – no single career, hobby or activity can completely fulfil anyone – but music is the gifting I have and what I feel my calling is.
What has been the biggest surprise so far about making music your career? What has been an unexpected or welcome challenge to it all? What has been the best part about it all?
I think the biggest surprise and the biggest challenge for any artist is finding out how difficult it actually is. Everybody tells you “Expect to hear ‘no’ a lot, it’ll be really difficult to make it”, but until you start actually hearing ‘no’ a lot, there’s still a small, proud part of you that thinks you’ll be the exception – that you’re good enough for everything to just happen perfectly. That definitely happened to me, but honestly I’m so glad I’m not an overnight success story. I’m growing as a person in ways I never would have if this path wasn’t challenging. In a strange way, I think that’s the worst and the best part of it – you have to face a lot of discouragement, but it only makes you more passionate.
Let’s talk about your newest single, “Crossfire.” What was the inspiration for it? How does it compare to anything else that you have released?
“Crossfire” was about an experience I had where someone was interested in me romantically, but I knew that I would hurt them if we got involved – I wasn’t in a place at the time to commit to a good relationship, and I knew that. “Crossfire” expresses the tension between desperately wanting someone, but knowing that you’re not meant for each other. Compared to other things I’ve released, I would describe it as the most anthemic. It has this sweeping quality about it that just makes you wanna sing along. I think I wrote the whole song in less than 20 minutes – whenever a song comes that quickly, my heart really needs to get it out, and I definitely hear that urgency and emotion when I listen back to it.
How does “Crossfire” compare to the rest of your EP, “Oxygen”? What was it like putting this collection together? Did anything surprise you about the process?
“Crossfire” is probably the most intense track on the EP – it functions as a transition into the title track, which moves toward healing and away from dysfunction. The process of putting the EP together was super organic – I had lots of different notecards with different songs that I shuffled and rearranged until landing on the set of tracks that became the EP. They all felt good together, and it was a solid feeling of “yep, that’s it, we got it”. The title track was probably the biggest surprise – “Oxygen” went through several different iterations before becoming what it is on the record, and it was one of those songs that I don’t really remember how it came to be – it just happened somehow, and it needed to be the title track.
What has been a favorite show of yours so far? What do you think makes an ideal show for you?
I played a show at the Parish Room at House of Blues a few months ago with some friends of mine, and it was absolutely incredible. People got out their phone lights once, and that’s really magical to see from stage. There was even a (hilariously failed) attempt at crowd surfing from a random dude up front during the last song. People were really into the music, and you could feel it. That’s an ideal show to me – where people are into it and feeling what you’re doing. When people actually respond to what you’re doing and saying, it gives you so much energy on stage, and makes the performance so much better for you and the audience.
Where can people see you perform next? Do you have any upcoming tour dates scheduled yet?
I’m working on some new show dates right now! People can track me in BandsInTown or sign up for my newsletter at chrishuttonmusic.com to get the latest tour dates.
How do you think you have grown as a musician since you first started making music? What if anything has stayed the same about your music-making process?
I’m sure I’ve grown in ways I don’t even realize. Obviously you gain ability in your craft as you do it for years, but I’ve also grown in my understanding of myself and of other people. That’s one of the goals of art – to mirror and relate human experiences for the sake of understanding and connection, and being able to participate in that is a really special thing. I’ve learned how to be honest. I’ve learned how to interact with the good parts of myself and the ugly parts of myself, and I’m (slowly but surely) learning how people work. I feel like that growth has been reflected in my music-making process… I’m less worried now about what’s “in” or what I think people would like to hear, what would be popular. Instead, I focus more on just being honest and writing what my heart needs to write, and I’ve found that people actually connect more deeply to that approach than to songs that are just catchy for the sake of being catchy.
How do you feel about social media? What do you think social media has done for your career?
I have violently mixed feelings about it. I enjoy social media, and obviously you can’t really function as a musician without it, but it’s so easy for me to get sucked into the numbers game of it. In a lot of ways, I feel like it actually disconnects me from people instead of connecting me, part of me wishes I could just sit at home and make music and have it magically appear in peoples heads without me having to do anything, but alas. I think the key is appreciating social media for what it is and using it as a tool if you have to, but not basing your self-worth or identity off of it, which is easier said than done, but it is possible.
What musicians would you absolutely still love to work with in the future?
I have a dream list. Jon Bellion, Jessie J, Zedd, and Halsey are at the top right now.
If you could design your dream music video right now, what would it look like?
I don’t want to say too much about this because it may be coming in the near future… but I would love to do something which incorporates story, choreography, and color. I want to create a visual world that pulls you in and makes you feel like you just saw an entire movie in three minutes. Honestly, I feel like Jacqui did that with the “Oxygen” video, that was pretty much a dream video for me already. We’ll see how we get to top that in the next one.
What has been the best thing a fan has told you? What comment from a fan has truly moved you?
“I felt that”. That’s the best thing I’ve ever heard from someone. Whenever I hear that, I know I’ve done my job well. At the risk of sounding conceited, I’ve had several people come up to me after performances gushing over my voice, and I’m grateful for those fans, but when someone truly connects with the stories I told, that is the best thing in the world for me. I want to give people something more than talent. If someone tells me that my songs helped them or gave them hope, or made them feel less alone, that to me is what music is all about.
Where would you love to hear a song of yours played?
Hearing something I’ve written in a movie would be really cool.
At the end of the day, what do you hope people take away from your music?
If people can relate to my music in ways that are healing for them, I’ll be happy. I don’t have any single take away in mind – I just want my music to leave people better than how it found them.