February 1, 2023
Capital Alumnus Turned Poetry Into Lyrics on New Album
After committing to music and meeting his producer in 2020, Chris Gatton ’10 released his debut album, “My Favorite Razor’s Edge,” in 2022. The Columbus-based singer- songwriter combined his passion for playing guitar and writing poetry to create 11 new tracks.
“There were about 10 years where I was working on different stuff and figuring it all out. That’s why it took me so long to settle into the art form,” said Gatton. “I only had a handful of shows over the years where the intention was for me to do my music. For some reason, I had a hard time just sinking my teeth into the form.”
Gatton started playing guitar when he was 10 years old, but it wasn’t until he went to college that he began to develop his passion for writing poetry. As a transfer student to Capital, Gatton was able to connect with faculty who continue to mentor him today.
“Chris was always an intense, yet good-humored, student who listened and put maximum effort into all he did, especially in the poetry writing classes he took with me. One can see that reflected in the lyrics of the songs on his albums, where there is not one cliched phrase or wasted image,” said Kevin Griffith, Ph.D., professor of English.
After high school, Gatton attended Belmont University in Nashville, Tennessee, and planned to study music business. The ability to major in music and minor in creative writing was one of the main reasons he decided to move back to Columbus.
“Chris seemingly had a different perspective in his Music Technology classes. Many students want to know about the technology, the gear, but Chris was all about the music. He wanted to know how to get the best performance from the musicians or bring out the right emotion from a recording,” said Chad Loughrige, assistant professor of Music Technology.
“My experience at Capital was a defining experience,” said Gatton. “I was interested in poetry and writing. In some ways, there was a split between what I was doing as a musician versus what I was doing as a writer. I was encouraged to write songs and let that be a part of what I do as a musician. I was encouraged to be a singer-songwriter who could really play guitar.”
At his recent album release performance, Gatton was able to translate the skills he learned in the classroom to the stage. While it may have taken him a while to find his way in music, Gatton only sees a path forward from now on.
“It was super obvious that I was just dancing around this thing, but for whatever reason it didn’t set in for me until 2020. I did a stint of trying to get into grad school. I did a couple of short films. I was dancing around trying to write, whether it was lyric writing or poetry,” said Gatton. “One of the last songs that I wrote on this album was ‘Ghost Boy,’ and that was our first single that we put out. My hope is do some more performances over the next year, travel a little bit, and play in other cities. I’m also working on the next album.”
To learn more about Chris Gatton, visit https://www.chrisgatton.com/.
If you are interested in Capital University’s Music Technology program, visit https://www.capital.edu/academics/conservatory-of-music/music-technology/.