Welcome to the fourth installment of Musician Origin Stories, a series in which musicians describe how they started down the path of music-making. 

Kris is a friend of mine from the ’90s(!!). His journey starts at the home piano and leads to much bigger arenas.

MW: When was the first time that you can remember feeling the impulse to become a musician?

kp1Kris Pierce: From a very young age, my parents introduced me to the 1812 Overture by Tchaikovsky, which my three-year-old self nicknamed, “The Boom-Boom Song.” I remember listening to it on repeat and was very surprised when our next door neighbor’s son, who was my age, had never heard of it before. When I was six years old, I don’t remember the moment exactly, but at some point I must have walked up to a piano and began hammering out my own melodies. My parents recognized a burgeoning talent because they signed me up for piano lessons very soon afterwards.

MW: What moment/person/piece/etc. served as the catalyst for your starting down the path of a practicing musician?

kp2KP: Throughout my ten years of lessons, I always included one or two pieces I had composed at my piano recitals. In 7th Grade, after having taken violin lessons for a few years, I joined the Tampa Bay Junior Orchestra and the Burns Junior High Orchestra, sitting in the first violin sections, and the seminal event of my life happened: I was playing one of my new melodies right before class on a piano and everyone immediately gravitated around me. I had found a hit; with them at least. So I convinced my teacher to let me borrow some books on scoring and I composed my first orchestral piece, Melodys Theme. We performed it at the final school recital of the year to a standing ovation. It was at that moment I decided I had to write music for the rest of my life.

MW: How did you proceed to become a musician?

kp3KP: In 1997 my best friend, Wendi Hughes, and I started a darkwave band called Mind Static (my stage name, Halo, began here). In my four-year residency with this project we landed a couple record deals, a movie placement, and performances on TV. In 2000 I began writing mostly electronic music under the moniker, Haunted Echo, which I still write as with thirteen commercial releases under my own record label, Halo Askew Entertainment (also created in 2000 but became a legitimate digital publishing company in 2016), Cleopatra Records, and Interscope Records. In 2004 I attended the Conservatory of Recording Arts and Sciences in Phoenix, AZ, and from there have lent my music writing and technical audio skills to many celebrities including Whoopi Goldberg, Cyndi Lauper, Jennifer Lopez, and Marc Anthony, in addition to an ever increasing roster of friends and talent like Kim Cameron, Zef Noise (Peter Murphy), NativeLab, Rob DeLuca (Sebastian Bach), and DJ Freddy Bastone.

kp4Kris “Halo” Pierce is a graduate of the Conservatory of Recording Arts and Sciences, prolific music producer, and professional audio engineer based in NYC. Some notable projects have included heading up productions with Whoopi Goldberg, Cyndi Lauper, Julie Taymor’s smash off-broadway hit, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, and Steve Martin’s Bright Star at NYSAF. He owns and operates the digital publishing company, Halo Askew Entertainment.  

Many thanks to Kris for sharing his story. Here’s where you can connect with him:

www.HaloAskewEnt.com

Spotify: http://spoti.fi/2jSQph0

YouTube: HaloAskewEnt

Twitter: @HaloAskew

Facebook: @HaloAskewEnt

Soundcloud: HaloAskewEnt

Beatport: http://dj.beatport.com/haloaskew

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