A live concert was the last thing on my mind when I stood at the Lamar Light Rail Station on a cold night in November. I wanted only to rush onto the train as quickly as possible, both to alleviate the chilling cold that had spread throughout my body and to capture one of the few remaining seats for the ride downtown.
I happened to settle in next to a tall blonde man who held a dark wooden ukulele in his lap. I remember thinking to myself, “A man with a tiny guitar, now that’s interesting” only seconds before his deep baritone voice overwhelmed the train car. He sang a song of his own making, a love ballad, and accompanying his deep, distinctive voice were the confident strums of the ukulele. He played three additional songs that evening to the delight of everyone around him.
Through a brief conversation on the train and a subsequent chat over a hot cup of coffee, I learned more about this musician who calls Lakewood, Colorado home.
Christopher Scott has been playing music for much of his life. He reflected on this musical background in his own words.
“I was fortunate to have a very artistic uncle growing up that lived with us and he listened to the greatest plethora of music. He got me into David Bowie, Bauhaus, Peter Gabriel, and Sonic Youth when I was eight years old. He was a big influence on me [and] when I was ten years old, he disappeared. I think the best way I could keep in touch with him, for myself, was to start playing music.”
“I begged my parents for a drum set and a guitar and the ball started rolling from there. I was ten years old.”
I asked Christopher to elaborate on his current projects. His face lit up as he explained a different side of his music to me. It’s a project geared toward children called Dusty Venus.
“I play songs, really silly songs about science, dressed up as this cowboy from the future, Dusty Venus. I try to get people geared up about science and I sing songs about how the sun works, the scientific method, and the history of physics. The idea is to get everybody together and understand one common language. And then also be able to culturally identify with each other and understand each other more.”
The concept of community ties heavily into Christopher’s work and is one of the driving forces behind his desire to charm train-goers.
He told me, “I usually have either my ukulele, my guitar, or my drum machine. I always play. I do it because its something that people are going to remember from their day. Even if they don’t say anything, they’re going to remember it and it’s going to change how their entire day went.”
“I have not once had anybody say anything bad. 90% of the time I have at least one person come up and they say wow, you made my day. I think I meet at least one or two new people a week doing this.”
Christopher particularly delights in playing for riders after Broncos games. The crowds are playful and interactive and additionally, it’s something a bit different for them. Christopher says that his playing on the light rail helps to change people’s “perception of everything around them.”
When I inquired if blog readers who see him are welcome to ask for a song he laughingly responded, “Yes, definitely.”
Christopher’s final words to me were both poetic and aspirational.
“Randomly I will walk down the street and break into song. Life is what it is but there’s no reason why we cant throw a little shine on it, a little makeup, a couple of cuff links and dress it up with some song, some dance, and some art.”
This blogger agrees wholeheartedly.
Christopher resides in Lakewood, Colorado so look for him on the West Light Rail Line.
Attached are links to a short video of him playing for our group and to his Dusty Venus project.
You Tube Video: http://youtu.be/dVy2jxmmLgQ
Dusty Venus: https://www.facebook.com/DustyVenus