Chrystabell Dazzles on the Eddie Winters Show

Chysta Bell interviews with Iconic Disc Jockey, Eddie Winters.

The Rock and Roll Coup D’etat by Eddie Winters

Recorded on: February 27, 2017


Eddie: We have an applause for you, that is just for you. Thank you so much for being on the program, we’re so excited to speak with you this morning.

Chrystabell: Wonderful, I’m happy to talk to you too Eddie.

Eddie: That is great. You know, 2017 is looking to be a huge year for Chrystabell. You got a huge [year], you got a record coming out, the Twin Peaks has been announced and it’s been rumored that you’re an official cast member on the show and things are getting crazy, how are you handling it?  How are you holding up over there?

Chrystabell: Okay Well, I’m doing my best and you know, I’m drinking probably too much coffee and getting a little bit too excited all the time but that kind of when the magic happens for me. So, I just kind of never stop working, planning, strategizing, scheming and that’s kind of what I do with most of my day.

Eddie: I mean it’s got to be… I mean having a big project, obviously the record is going to be huge, you worked with John Parish on this record, he produced this record and then obviously, your relationship with David Lynch, everyone is familiar with that but you’ve got the series, you know, how do you prepare for such a large scale kind of, you know, event? Is there any way that you can prepare emotionally or mentally?

Chrystabell: Well, you know, this is an interesting thing because, I don’t exactly have anything to compare this upcoming experience to, I think even just, it’s this roll out to this show is any indication, it’s going to be madness and I’m kind of thinking I’m going to have to just hang on for dear life and I’m doing all of the preparations that I know how to do but I think really, it’s just going to be the adventure of a lifetime and I don’t know exactly what that means or looks like but I am so open to whatever it may be and I think it’s going to be maybe even, really exciting, horrifying, magical and then, you know and then all of that all over again. So, this is kind of in my mind when I think it might look like but the intensity of the stance for Twin Peaks is a touch intimidating, you know but I’m going to, you know, just do the best that I can and make sure that I enjoy every moment.

Eddie: Of course, I mean, it’s obviously that the global phenomenon, the original Twin Peaks, you know, became, it’s going to be, you know, I can see why it could be quite intimidating and you know, rather huge shoes to fill and you know, I can only imagine, that’s why they didn’t call me.

Chrystabell: Well, you know Eddie, I think that part of it is, you know, the unknown, you know, there’s this kind of mystery and intrigue around it because, there have been before this just following that, I don’t know if anything, if any others, you know, probably Star Wars could give it a run for its money but like it’s just, it’s really this, it’s the phenomenal thing what Twin Peaks was and continues to be to this day, so like precious to you the fans and so, really all you want to do is step up and be the very best that you can be, so that you can be welcomed into this world…

Eddie: Right.

Chrystabell: …and that the people who could cherish the world, the Twin Peaks and hold that so dearly in their lives will be happy, that you are now a part of that of that world.

Eddie: It seems, I mean, that’s kind of what you hope for is exactly, you know, it’s embraced like that and you know, with this such a high profile series, there must be a lot of secrecy around it, you know, not much information has come out about it and people are chomping at the bit to find out any new information. Has it been tough for you to kind of keep quiet and knowing what you might know?

Chrystabell: The answer is yes and initially, it was maddening to hold all of this information and for it to be so, I mean, you can’t… not even a peep, not even a little bit could be given because, then it just starts opening doors, partly because the fans are so smart and so curious, that you have to be incredibly close to the chest with all of the information and initially, that was really hard but as it went on, as time went on, because this project, you know, been in motion for a while now, you start to use… my experience is that, I am growing more and more even attached to this secrecy…

Eddie: Right.

Chrystabell: …like there’s so few mysteries. Now, in this day and age of social media and there’s so much information and so much access and sort of be a part of something that is so delightfully mysterious and you know, terribly mysterious, it’s like, you know, it almost hurts, the suspense…

Eddie: Right.

Chrystabell: that’s like, that’s the beauty of it as well. So, it was really, really hard at the beginning to, you know, to hold it all inside and now, I’m relishing that and I find it to be a really beautiful opportunity and really rare to have this secrecy, you know, around something and have an element of surprise and the excitement of the unveiling being tacked, you know, when the show comes out. So, there’s something really, just like precious about it that I’ve just decided to go that direction…

Eddie: Right.

Chrystabell: …instead of being, you know, overwhelmed with the desire to share everything that I know, that would be devastating and I’m pretty sure I would just get like immediately sent the black lodge, get fired. Get fired. So that’s also helpful, you don’t know what would happen to you, if you don’t know who would come in for the night and just kind of suck your soul into oblivion, if you by chance start giving information that you aren’t supposed to give.

Eddie: I would be worried that you’ve got, you know, there might be some fans digging in your trash, looking for clues or something.

Chrystabell: You know, I’m not going to lie, that would be both thrilling and horrifying all at once.

Eddie: All at once.

Chrystabell: I haven’t happened yet that I know of but yeah, I guess we’ll find out.

Eddie: If that does happen, you got to come back on the program.

Chrystabell: Yeah, I’ll tell you all about it for sure. 

Eddie: You know, there was some, you know, obviously, we’re talking about, you know, there’s rumors and there’s this and that and I saw this thing on the classic website IMDB, they…

Chrystabell: Oh no!!!

Eddie: They added some new information about the new series, listed a lot of actors on there and there are potential cast names and they listed you on there. Do you know anything about that? Is that even accurate?

Chrystabell: You know, what I can say about IMDB is that, it can be populated by fans who are speculating but don’t know anything and they’re excited fans, who want to, you know, to be a part of the action of Twin Peaks

Eddie: Right

Chrystabell: And you know and I saw that as well and you know, all I can say is that, the secrets are still intact and that IMDB is just a website, that thinks they have a lot of information, that may or may not be true and the element of surprise is not endangered but I would encourage people to just, you know, let the secret simmer… 

Eddie: Right.

Chrystabell: I mean, let it simmer and await expectantly for the truth to be unveiled and that’s going to be the best way to go.

Eddie: I mean that’s, you know, what being patient, that is…

Chrystabell: Patient. 

Eddie: That is going to be tough, you know.

Chrystabell: You know, this is the theme of my life, having patience and this, you know, remarkable experience of being in Twin Peaks, is no different than that, it’s just taking a remarkable patience but I the feeling that the payoff will be worth it.

Eddie: That’s you know, we’re all excited and the show is, I believe is May twenty first, on show time. So, we’re all going to be sitting there with our TiVos all ready, I’m excited.

Chrystabell: Me too.

Eddie: Was there a moment, I mean, we saw a trailer for the program, where they brought a lot of the old cast members from the original series and they kind of were just hinting and talking about the production of it and the excitement around it. Was there a moment for you, where it kind of clicked, you know, like; holy crap!!! This is wow!!! I’m a part of this thing. Was there any kind of a ‘wow’ moment for you?

Chrystabell: You know, those moments have been coming in waves since I was asked to be a part of the project and you know, I can’t even compare it to anything else, it’s been like stream of revelation, that I’m actually a part of something that’s so special and that kind of really seemed like a dream.

Eddie: Right.

Chrystabell: I mean; I don’t really honestly know that I really digested the information…

Eddie: Right.

Chrystabell: …and depth into the reality of it because, it is kind of then tactical at the moment and you know and it’s such a big project and really no one knows anything and so because of the mystery and because of the vastness of it, you know, I have these moments of like kind of like that inner squeal of delight and then, I have moments where it just kind of seems like, you know maybe, it’s never actually going to happen and so, I kind of live in that place and I don’t know that that will even change until show comes out, it might just kind of continue to be this thing that lives in another dimension…

Eddie: Right

Chrystabell: …but yeah, I just kind of like, I’m kind of in awe of the whole thing really, just the show is coming back at all, it’s already just So tremendously interesting and cruel and unusual and historical right and then that I get to be in even a small part of it, is like this huge wow and then, kind of, you know, like; awe.

Eddie: It’s, I mean, it’s incredibly, I mean, I know exactly what you saying, it’s, I mean, because it is such a global phenomenon and the fact that, you know, I mean obviously, you have a relationship with David Lynch, collaborating on music, that obviously, the dynamic working in the same studio or writing music, is one thing but then, when you’re working on saying; a film project or a television project, you know, the roles are different, you know, how did the roles kind of change for you? I mean obviously, you had this, you’ve got this long relationship with him but you’re in a different role, was it a different adjustment for you?

Chrystabell: Well, you know, with David, what I can speak to that, I can’t really give any specifics about what our relationship on set necessarily was because, that could give things away. 

Eddie: Alright.

Chrystabell: But I can say that David, for a while, my history with him, he’s just, the way that he directs is like, it’s very conversational, it’s like you’re having a conversation with the person that has absolute knowledge about the subject, that you’re that you’re talking about.

Eddie: Right.

Chrystabell: So, you’re just completely used with the spurring to how this person views the situation and we feel very confident in the guidance that’s offered and then, you have this really just kind of wonderful person, that the exchange is happening with. So, David is just this kind of a great guy, who is incredibly capable and then, you have a conversation about what either the mood that is looking to be conveyed, you know, in that moment and then, my job is to convey it and so, that’s what we’ve done with music for almost twenty years, you know, he writes music and he has these ideas for the mood of the song and then I come into the studio and listen to the music and if I feel like visually, the music that is playing to me, then he shares with me the vision that he has and then, either he go get some lyrics that he has already written or he really write some lyrics on the spot, that just adds to this equation and then, I go into the booth and start thinking, you know and that’s the direction, the direction is moving together towards the vision and David just, you know, giving you the anecdote or giving you, just kind of cradling you in the experience, to allow you to evoke the mood that carries forth the vision and so, I think that David, you know, this is kind of the magic of it, it feels like it’s coming from you but really, you know, David has been guiding you and he trusts you to be in that moment and so, you’re like; great, I guess I can do this, if David thinks I can do it, I’m here with David, I feel great about this moment, let’s see what happens and that’s really kind of the genius of David, it’s the direction, feels like it’s almost coming from within you and you’ve got this incredibly competent guide and then, you just do it.

Eddie: Is there a way, you know, you guys work together and it sounds like it’s a very interesting collaboration and when you guys are working, is it a fast kind of thing, where you are trying out different things or is it a very slow process or is it a little bit about, what’s the pace of the organic kind of creativity that’s captured when you’re making music?

Chrystabell: Well, it definitely varies. Sometimes, you know, we’ve had certain songs, for instance, a song called Polish Poem, that was in the film Inland Empire

Eddie: Right.

Chrystabell: …that was, it’s a six-minute, maybe seven-minute song, it’s a very long but I actually, you know, was able to through all of the melodies in two or three takes. So, that song, you know, was like three hours total, you know but he had written the music beforehand and the lyrics as well and then my part, I came in and it was about three hours and then, there were some songs that we started, let’s say in, you know, 2003 and they weren’t done until 2009…

Eddie: Wow!!!!

Chrystabell: …or maybe later on and so, it’s different every time and then, there’s sometimes when we’re in the studio are together and it’s really cooking and I feel like I’m finding the sweet spot really fast and then, there’s sometimes when I feel like I’m never going to find it and I’m so far away and I’m driving down the highway in the exact wrong direction and so then, those moments, you’re kind of starting to feel like maybe, it’s just not going to happen but it just means that it’s going to take a little bit more patience…

Eddie: Right

Chrystabell: A little bit more coaxing, to find that sweet spot and then, you just do it until you find it and yeah that’s taken up to maybe six or seven years, in the process with David sometimes but again, that patient is sometimes brutal but it’s always worth it.

Eddie: Yeah, it’s, I mean obviously, what comes out of it is just gorgeous music and I have to ask you, you know because, you are doing some acting, you do some modeling, you’re a great performer and you do touring and releasing of albums. When you wake up in the morning, how do you… what do you identify with at first?

Chrystabell: At first it’s music, music is… and singing and performing on stage, is my happy place. I’m always trying to get there and I love the other aspects of the process and the writing and the recording and I really enjoy modeling as well but making music is all about getting to the stage, to perform the music and seeing the people who are at the show and that exchange is my heaven on earth, besides of course, being with my family and my loved one.

Eddie: Right.

Chrystabell: That’s, you know, that’s the stuff but music is where my heart soars and that’s the art, that is the first thing that’s on my mind, to create, you know, in the morning and at the end of the day, that’s what I want to be doing.

Eddie: Right. You have a new record that’s going to be coming in… do you have a date for the record, it’s called We Dissolve, do you have a specific date for the release?

Chrystabell: Yes, it looks like June sixth is going to be the release for the record and it’s been a journey to get it completed as they are because, there are so many, you know, elements involved and there’s also strategy involved and there’s an art, you know, after you’ve made the record, the next part of the art is the release of the record and you put so much effort and energy into the creation and the writing and the recording and then, that’s just the first phase and I’m now, you know, that phase is complete, we’re packaging, we’re in the midst of manufacturing, the images for the record are beautiful. The packaging is coming along fantastically and I’m just, you know, I just keep moving towards that date and, then I’ll be doing a tour in Europe and probably a few dates in America as well and you know and then I get to be on stage and go to my happy place.

Eddie: Alright. You know we talked earlier and we mentioned the producer John Parish, he helped with this record. He has obviously worked with people like P.J. Harvey and you also had a lot of a great guests on the record, there was significance to you personally, having this record be a record that was a collaboration with David but something that’s kind of, your own personal kind of triumph for you.

Chrystabell: I would say it’s something of a rite of passage, this is definitely a significant moment for me because, David and I have been so closely involved musically for many years now but I’ve been making records, goodness, I don’t know probably twenty or twenty five but I’ve never been relieved and it was all to hone my skills as a singer and a musician and a film writer, to be able to be something that I was super proud of and to not have David kind of, you know, metaphorically holding my hand for the process but for it to be really on my own, is a definitely of a moment in my life and you know and perfectly appropriate and with David, there was always this, you know, feeling of wow, I had this amazing person who was supporting me and assisting my process and never really had expectation that honestly really even ever finished our album and then we had an album and then we continued making music and then we had an another E.P. and then we had this new chapter of Twin Peaks creating together but it was time for me to be musically more independent and so, that’s this moment.

Eddie: Right.

Chrystabell: It’s Chrystabell, you know, kind of go it out to the world without that parachute of David Lynch and hoping that there’s, you know, a net somewhere but I feel super confident and I’m relieved about the record and John Parish is a dream and he’s such a wonderful person and so talented and I was in such good hands with John as a producer and the songs, I feel are really strong and really personal and a full way into a slightly new territory but still very reverent for the music that I made with David and that kind of the thing is, you don’t want to leave your fans without anything to hang onto, you know, from your previous work and so, I feel like this was really the perfect transition in into the next phase of my musical reality and so, I’m  really looking forward to bring it out into the world and I hope that you know, I’ll have the thumbs up from my Lynch-ChrystaBell musical fans.

Eddie: Right.

Chrystabell: And then and it will open some new doors, some new fans, so that’s the dream, that’s the goal.

Eddie: And how was the song writing process for this new record, you know, when did you start working on these particular songs? and how did they kind of organically come together?

Chrystabell: Yes. Well, I have a songwriting partner that I work with, who lives in that in San Antonio, Texas [Chris Smart] and we’ve been really writing materials for this for this record for years and that’s just kind of what it takes…

Eddie: Right.

Chrystabell: …a lot of work-shopping and we probably wrote, I don’t know, maybe twenty-five or thirty songs…

Eddie: Wow!!!

Chrystabell: …for the record and John, when we sent them to John and John chose the ten or actually eleven- but there’s ten on the record and we have one kind of bonus track- that was the most appropriate for the production style that he has and that came together as a nicely, as a body of work for the album so I went to San Antonio and work-shopped music and hooks and ideas with Christopher Smart, who has been in my life probably, you know, since about sixteen years old, I was a big fan of his music and then brought him on board to play bass in the launch project for the touring show and then, started collaborating with him, writing songs. So, that was just quite a long process…

Eddie: Right

Chrystabell: But that’s what it takes to get the material and so probably, really about three years with the writing, to get the tempo songs that we have for We Dissolve.

Eddie: Right. Wow!!! wow!!! I mean, that’s a great, you know, that’s a great vetting process when you you’re doing something at such a pace because, you’re able to really kind of, you know, look at things from a lot of different perspectives and you grow with the material as well.

Chrystabell: Absolutely, absolutely.

Eddie: You know, speaking of San Antonio and you grew up in Texas, if I’m not mistaken and what was, you know, what was the early years for Chrystabell, like growing up in Texas, before you came out to California, before you even got into music, what was life like as a youth growing up?

Chrystabell: As a youth, well there was never really a time before I got into music because, I started pretty early with musical theater and my parents own and ran a recording studio. My stepfather was a composer, producer, engineer, my mother is a singer and she was a session vocalist and she also managed the studio. So, they were together at a very young age, maybe I was like eight years old and before that, my mother delivered singing telegram as her vocation, so there was always music in my reality and I’m so grateful for that upbringing because, you know, music, I think, would have been my passion regardless of whether I had such an exposure to it but I did have an exposure to it and I was always really supported in my passion for music but you know, I didn’t go theater, I did tap dancing.

Eddie: Wow!!!

Chrystabell: You know, I was obsessed with like Michael Jackson, The Go-Gos and Kermit the Frog and these were my early influences. The Eurythmics, you know, I was really into that, really the pop music that my mom really liked, she brought that into my life and we have the cassette and I would play the cassette and I would dance around and then by around like eleven or twelve, I was doing voiceover at the studio and then, started working as a session singer by like, you know, fourteen.

Eddie: Wow!!!

Chrystabell: And yeah. So really, that was it and meanwhile, I was trying to act, you know, doing audition for commercials and such but that, it just kind of never really seemed like I was right for the part. I went on a lot of auditions and never really got a yes and so kind of figured; well, I guess music is, well, is that for me and kind of let the acting part go and then, kind of landed an interesting acting gig at around eighteen years old, in a Kung Fu film.

Eddie: Is that Right?

Chrystabell: Right and then I thought I would do acting but then, joined a band when I was about eighteen and a half or so…

Eddie: Wow!!!

Chrystabell: …and music was the rest of my young life and into adulthood.

Eddie: When you were smaller, did you, I mean, did you feel like you were maybe a little different than the other kids, obviously with this other background, doing voiceovers and getting into acting, did you stand out as a child in school?

Chrystabell: I think that, I don’t know, I mean, I hear now like, you know, people that I went to school when they, you know, they say things like, you know; yeah, you were just a little, you were a bit different. You know, I was always in the talent show then and doing everything I could to just, you know, get on stage but it wasn’t like I was incredibly confident. It was like I just felt at home when I was performing and didn’t really feel super at home like just like in class, I didn’t feel like I was really a stand out, as far as, you know, among the other children but when it came to performance, I was, you know, I guess pretty gutsy for, you know, I just wanted to get on stage and kind of see what happened…

Eddie: Right.

Chrystabell: …and that was a real thrill to me but you know, if you saw me in class, you probably wouldn’t pick me out to be like the performer but that’s kind of, that’s what was inside of me.

Eddie: You know, also, your name is easy interesting too, your name is Chrystabell, a lot of people made mistake that it’s your first and last name, Chrystabel is your first names and do people just call you Chrysta, do you get that a lot?

Chrystabell: Yes. You’re hitting the nail on the head Eddie. My first name is Chrystabell and this was… My last name is Zucht (prounounced Zoo-cked)and it didn’t exactly roll off the tongue. 

Eddie: Right.

Chrystabell: So as a performer, I felt like Chrystabell was really strong but it’s two words and I didn’t really foresee people thinking that my first name was Chrysta and last name was Bell. So, it’s a bit of a dance sometimes, like letting people know actually, you know, I say it like a double first name, like a southern thing…

Eddie: Right.

Chrystabell: …but in actuality, my name is from a poem by a British author named Samual Taylor Coleridge and my mother read this poem to her class when she was in high school and thought that it was a beautiful name and then, you know, she figured out how she wanted to spell it and she made it two words and you know, this is a process and I think that once people know it’s Chrystabell, they’ll just know but until then yes it’s Chrystabell, it’s not just Chrysta.

Eddie: Right. You know, I was going to get… there’s a lot of words get thrown around when people talk about you when singing and seeing you perform, a lot of people say, you know, that it’s very dreamlike and it’s very thrilling and it’s got this kind of quality to it and I wanted to ask, you know, personally do you have any connection to dreams, to the dream world, is there a personal significance with you that comes out in your music?

Chrystabell: Well, I think that the music I made with David in particularly is more, looking to open up another dimension and looking to give in to otherness and the otherness that many have, you know, kind of the cross of experience with dreaming, as this the other place, the inexplicable stage, you know, we don’t quite know why it happens but it’s so mysterious and I think that that was my effort to recreate the essence of the music that I’ve been making with David, which would vary other dimensional and cosmic and dreamy. So, in my desire to have to present that feeling on stage, I looked for ways to invoke that feeling because, that’s what the music does, I mean, you go to be an artist that you love, I feel like part of that is to have a visible live experience, of what you get when you listen to the record…

Eddie: Right

Chrystabell: …different from the record but you… so, I was always looking to embody this dreamlike quality and it felt like I had this conscious thought of what that would look like, you know, it’s part of my movement. I just desired to embody that feeling and then allowed myself to do what that felt like for me as a performer and so, I think that this kind of… is what was translated, it was just kind of the real nature that really was the intention for the live performance, to take you into another place and to be a bit different than your usual, I think a little uncomfortable even, a little, you know, ultra-real, ultra-functional, ultra… like Apocalypse, cosmic, all of those things, I just wanted to have an invocation and those were the words that kind of to come up, as far as the explanation was like, you know, dreamlike, so, I’m down with that, that’s fine with me.

Eddie: Right. I mean, it’s created, such a… you know, I’ve seen the videos of the performances and they’re just spellbinding and obviously, you know, the audiences are just kind of caught up into this. I don’t know whether you would want to call it a mood or something but then, it just grabs them and it’s a very incredible and I’m looking forward to it. You mentioned that you’d be touring over in Europe when the release of the record comes out and hopefully in the States as well. Do you plan on doing sort of an extensive United States tour at some point?

Chrystabell: Absolutely and you know, these tours are… they take a tremendous effort to organized and to come to fruition and at the moment, you know, Europe has been really open and receptive and America, I would love to be here and I want to do more touring here and you know, David always goes; you go where it’s hot for you.

 Eddie: Right.

Chrystabell: And so far, Europe has been hot for me, I guess, I love the way that sounds. So, I’m working on creating that heat here in America and it’s happening and so far, it’s the big cities; New York and Los Angeles and San Francisco and I feel confident that I’ll be hitting these cities in May and early June and then, maybe, you know, when I come back and the tour will come together but that’s certainly the intention, is to get to build the music…

Eddie: Right.

Chrystabell: Here in America.

Eddie: That’s great, that brings the matches back because, it’s great but I got to tell you Chrystabell, it is been just an absolute pleasure speaking with you this morning, I’m very excited for you. The release of your record is going to be in June, We Dissolve is the title, produced by John Parish and of course, everyone could catch Twin Peaks, when it hits May twenty first on Showtime. I want to thank you so much for spending your morning with us and sharing these details I loved it and it’s so great to hear all of these great insights.

Chrystabell: Thank you Eddie, thank you for your great question and I appreciate being on the show, I’ve had a lot of fun too. I wish you the best of luck.

Eddie: Well, thank you so much. Hopefully, we’ll catch up with you soon, once the show is released and the record is out and get you back on and it’ll be fantastic.

Chrystabell: Sounds great.

Eddie: Well, thank you so much Chrystabell. Take care and best of luck to you.

Chrystabell: Thank you Eddie. Bye, bye.

Chrystabell featured on the Eddie Winters Show
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