Chris Ford is the frontman and driving force behind Christopher the Conquered, who are releasing their third album, “The Fate of a Good Man,” on Maximum Ames Records on April 17th, and playing Gross Domestic Product on April 14th. Chris was kind enough to take time out of his busy schedule and sit down with me for an interview at Deano’s in Ames over a couple of Red Stripes.
DMMC: Tell me about the new album – is there a theme or concept behind it? The name seems to imply one.
Chris Ford: Yes, there is. When I write songs, I write organically, just whatever comes to me, and then I learn later, or while I’m writing, what it means to me. I write a lot of songs, and I don’t really work anything out with the band unless I know I’m going to use it, because it’s a lot of effort and work.
It’s a typical weeknight outside 212 4th Street in Des Moines, or as many local musicians know it, “The Mews.” Tonight, the special being served is local hip-hop. Passing by, you might hear the bass from the drums thumping through the closed doors, as many gather outside the venue in small “cypher” sessions: free styling over beat boxing or no beat at all. Inside, a crowd huddles close to the stage listening to emcees deliver raw lyrics about the lives they’ve lived and the feelings they know.
Kerber came up with the idea for Locusic the night before Startup Weekend 2011, almost one year ago. He wanted to pitch something during the weekend, which would be a networking-and-creating event among some of the Midwest’s top innovators. And at the end of the weekend they’d vote on projects that could actually be viable, and one of those ideas could be Iowa’s next big startup.
The Des Moines Music Coalition recently welcomed two new members – Angela Johnson and Mike Utley – to serve on its board and help create a stronger and more diverse live music economy in greater Des Moines. We asked Johnson and Utley to tell us a little bit about themselves, why they love music and what their goals are as board members.