Ken Christianson

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Ken Christianson
Christianson WNYC.jpg
Ken Christianson, May 2013 at a WNYC's Soundcheck
Background information
Genres Classical, electro-acoustic, contemporary dance, funk, rock, alternative rock, indie rock, jazz, country, folk
Occupation(s) Composer, arranger, musician, sound designer, visual artist, performance artist, graphic designer, singer, singer-songwriter
Instruments Piano, violin, electric bass, viola, keyboards, drums
Years active 2000-present
Associated acts Rogue Wave, Three Trees, Pink Fuzzy Animals, Jimmy Lifton Band, The Hawaii Show, The Half Ton Club, Carleton Singing Knights, Straight River Mud Dogs, The Menstruators with Nadia G

Ken Christianson is an American musician and artist living in Los Angeles, California, U.S, and co-founder of Père Music.[1] He is the composer of the score to the short film Better Left Alone (2005),[2] resident composer for the Samantha Giron Dance Project,[3] bass player for the Los Angeles funk-jam band The Three Trees,[4] violinist for The Jimmy Lifton Group,[5] and former keyboard player for the indie rock band, Rogue Wave.[6]

Ken earned his BFA in Sculpture from the Minneapolis College of Art and Design, and his MFA in Music Composition from CalArts. Christianson also completed portions of his undergraduate studies at Carleton College and Parsons Paris.

He is the younger sibling of Masanori Mark Christianson, bass-player and multi-instrumentalist of the California indie rock bands Rogue Wave, Release The Sunbird, and The Heavenly States.[7]

Solo work[edit]

Christianson performed the Jeff Buckley and Elizabeth Fraser cover "All Flowers in Time Bend Towards the Sun" at the 2008 Annual Jeff Buckley Tribute in Los Angeles, CA under the pseudonym Scott Mead.[8]

Christianson released a self-produced 26-track double album set on January 15, 2010 entitled Sunshine/Shadow.[9][10]

On February 11, 2010, Christianson performed at the "To Haiti With Love" all-star musical jam at Boulevard 3 in Hollywood, CA, sharing the bill with other artists such as Common, Daniel Bedingfield, and Judith Hill.[11][12][13]


Christianson launched a Kickstarter project to fund the recording and publishing of a large number of his own composed chamber works on February 12, 2013 that successfully funded on March 24, 2013. He was pledged $12,711.00, surpassing the $11,250.00 goal.[14]

Collaborative work[edit]

In 2010 Christianson joined indie rock band Rogue Wave for their North American tour promoting their fourth full-length album, Permalight, playing synthensizers, violin and singing backup vocals.[15][16]

Christianson finished a tour at the end of August 2008 with the Samantha Giron Dance Project,[3] with performances at the new Santa Fe Complex[17] in Santa Fe, NM, the 2008 Boulder Fringe Festival[18] in Colorado, as well as the 2008 Celebrate Dance Festival in San Diego, CA.[19] His compositions for the tour included pre-recorded music as well as live electronic and acoustic performance.

Christianson again composed and arranged music in collaboration with the Samantha Giron Dance Project for eight performances at the Unknown Theater in Los Angeles in April 2009 with a piece entitled Mongrels, a multi-form modern dance performance capturing the spirit of the underground dance community synthesizing classical violin-driven music with club and modern dance.[20]

Ken composed and performed the score for a dance series entitled "Dis-Illusions", choreographed by Donna Sternberg. The first of this series was performed at the Royal T Cafe in Culver City, CA on November 7, 2010.[21] "Dis-Illusions II" was performed May 7, 2011 at the LA Live Arts space in Eagle Rock, CA.[21][22] The third installment, "Dis-Illusions III", was performed at the Annenberg Community Beach House in Santa Monica, CA June 14, 2011.[23]

Ken continued his ongoing collaboration with choreographer Samantha Giron again for the performance of "Sex, Love, Money," a modern ballet shown at San Francisco's CounterPULSE theater on July 22 and 23, 2011.[24] Critic Stephanie Echeveste of SF Weekly remarked, "The score by Ken Christianson was a delight, ranging from muted underwater explosions to trembling violins, glitchy electronic melodies, and pulsating beats. Sprinkled throughout were anecdotal soundbites about marriage, which frame the piece." [25]

Ken composed music for "The Flowering of Desire", the first in a series of dance performances choreographed by Donna Sternberg & Dancers on November 13, 2011. The piece was performed at the Baldwin Hills Scenic Overlook in Culver City, CA and made possible by grants from the Culver City Performing Arts Grant Program with support from Sony Pictures Entertainment.[26][27][28][29][30]

In March 2012, Ken contributed original compositions to NAACP Image Award winner Kenyetta Lethridge’s play Innocent Flesh.[31]

Père Music[edit]

In April 2013, Christianson and partner Cassandra Nguyen launched Père, a commissioned-based, personalized music service for newborns. Père was featured on WNYC's program Soundcheck in May 2013.[1]


In March 2011, Ken signed with Angry Mob Publishing based in Santa Monica, CA.[32]


  1. ^ a b Shari (Christianson) Miller (2013-05-22). "Painting A Musical Portrait of Your Baby - Soundcheck". Retrieved 2013-09-05. 
  2. ^ "Better Left Alone (2005) : Full Cast & Crew". Retrieved 25 February 2015. 
  3. ^ a b [1] Archived May 3, 2008, at the Wayback Machine.
  4. ^ Archived from the original on March 24, 2012. Retrieved May 14, 2011.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  5. ^ "About the musicians". Retrieved 2013-09-05. 
  6. ^ "Dominic East Ken Christianson Masanori Mark Christianson Zach Rogue... | FilmMagic | 105645438". FilmMagic. 2010-10-17. Retrieved 2013-09-05. 
  7. ^ "The Heavenly States Website". Retrieved 2013-12-31. 
  8. ^ "Myspace". Retrieved 2013-09-05. 
  9. ^ Fritz Haeg (2010-01-15). "On January 15th, 2010, KEN CHRISTIANSON… « Fritz Haeg". Retrieved 2013-09-05. 
  10. ^ [2][dead link]
  11. ^ [3] Archived June 4, 2011, at the Wayback Machine.
  12. ^ "Price Request - BuyDomains". Retrieved 2015-02-25. 
  13. ^ "To Haiti With Love, Los Angeles CA, Boulevard 3". 2010-02-11. Retrieved 2013-09-05. 
  14. ^ "Recording New Chamber Works by Ken Christianson". Retrieved 2013-09-05. 
  15. ^ "Dominic East Ken Christianson and Zach Rogue of Rogue Wave perform as... | WireImage | 105677089". WireImage. 2010-10-17. Retrieved 2013-09-05. 
  16. ^ "Dominic East Ken Christianson and Zach Rogue of Rogue Wave perform as... News Photo". Getty Images. Retrieved 2015-02-25. 
  17. ^ [4][dead link]
  18. ^ Archived from the original on April 2, 2009. Retrieved August 26, 2008.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  19. ^ Archived from the original on July 25, 2008. Retrieved August 26, 2008.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  20. ^ Archived from the original on March 4, 2009. Retrieved April 16, 2009.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  21. ^ a b "Donna Sternberg & Dancers". Retrieved 2013-09-05. 
  22. ^ "Performances". Retrieved 2013-09-05. 
  23. ^ ""Dis-Illusions III", a dance with science by Donna... Tickets, Santa Monica - Eventbrite". 2011-06-14. Retrieved 2013-09-05. 
  24. ^ Archer, Larissa (2011-07-19). "Dance Production Sex, Love, Money Takes on All Sides of Marriage". Retrieved 2013-09-05. 
  25. ^ Echeveste, Stephanie (2011-07-26). "Samantha Giron Dance Project's Sex, Love, Money Reveals the Yearnings of the Soul". Retrieved 2013-09-05. 
  26. ^ "Donna Sternberg Dancers- Flowering of Desire". Culver City Crossroads. 2011-11-13. Retrieved 2015-02-25. 
  27. ^ "The Flowering of Desire". Culver City Times. Retrieved 2013-09-05. 
  28. ^ [5] Archived November 8, 2011, at the Wayback Machine.
  29. ^ [6]
  30. ^ "Eye Spy LA Discount Entertainment - DONNA STERNBERG & DANCERS PRESENTS THE FLOWERING OF DESIRE in Culver City". 2011-11-13. Retrieved 2013-09-05. 
  31. ^ Archived from the original on March 27, 2014. Retrieved April 19, 2014.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  32. ^ Archived from the original on April 5, 2011. Retrieved March 31, 2011.  Missing or empty |title= (help)

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