Chris is known for his musical intuition, professionalism, creative drive and solid roots chops. He toured extensively with his first band Jambay with feature appearances on the HORDE tour. In the years following Chris played lead guitar and collaborated with several high profile artists including Melvin Seals (Jerry Garcia Band), Ken Kesey, Sean Penn, and Grammy winning producer Ted Templeman. Chris has released four highly acclaimed albums as a solo artist, and performs regularly leading his own electric and acoustic bands. His most recent record, Falling Water Shimmering Strings (Real Music label) highlights Chris' signature acoustic slide sound.
When not playing music, you might find Chris surfing cold, majestic waves in Northern California.
"Haunting and other worldly, like a time capsule from a lost kingdom. Perhaps Atlantis." - SF Chronicle
"Chris Haugen is in total harmony with his musical soul, in his ability to create such a marvelous work of timeless musical ecstasy. Falling Water, Shimmering Strings emphasizes the sheer quality of artists and music upon the Real Music record label, absolutely recommended." - Steve Sheppard, One World Music
"Haugen's creativity abounds through a variety of guitars, Weissenborn, lap steel, and banjo combining to conjure flavors of India while Haugen's countless hours with the ocean gently reveal some of surfing's allure" - Real Music
"...sounds like waves breaking in Malibu or Marin County." - Midwest Records
Collaborations and Performances include with: JJ Cale, Taj Mahal, Derek Trucks, Dave Schools (Wide Spread Panic), Glen Tilbrook (Squeeze), Bob Weir, Theresa Andersson, Steve Kimock, Maria Muldaur, Michael Kang, (String Cheese Incident Simon Lott (C. Hunter), Wally Ingram (Sheryl Crow), Jerry Hannan, Juan Nelson (Ben Harper), Jason Yates (Ben Harper), Mark De Gli Antoni (David Byrne, Soul Coughing), Leon Mobley (Ben Harper), Jeff Coffin (Bela Fleck), Darol Anger, Reed Mathis, Will Bernard, Melvin Seals (Jerry Garcia Band), Samantha Stollenwerk, Trevor Garrod, Eric McFadden, Matthew Moon, Charlie Musselwhite, Eric Krasno (Soul Live), Jeff Sipe (Trey Anastasio), Les Claypool, Chris Goldsmith (producer), Ted Templeman (producer), George Daly (producer), Tea Leaf Green, Radiators, String Cheese, Jeff Watson (Night Ranger), Anders Osborne.
"This album is a deep meditation steeped in hope and vision, with the intent of bringing a sense of calm and connection to listeners."
Chris Haugen is a staple in the San Francisco music scene, having performed and published music with Phil Lesh, Ken Kesey, and Sean Penn. He has also published 50 commissioned songs on the YouTube Audio Library. Chris' music draws deeply on his 30 year yoga practice, and surfing in Northern California. His personal highlight is having performed with surf legend and yogi Gerry Lopez. Chris plays several stringed instruments, and is best known for slide guitar. His new release "First Light" comes out June 5. Although originally intended as a surfing reference, when you wait on the beach for enough light to paddle out, the idea of darkness turning to light has taken on new meaning with the changes in our world.
I fell in love with the work of Chris Haugen back in 2015 when he released the album Falling Water, Shimmering Strings, and still to this day I feature it heavily on my personal musical playlists of choice. Now Chris is back with a brand new offering entitled First Light.
For a coastal dweller like me, First Light is a magical time, fishing boats hit the sea, birds flock to gather for an early morning snack, and a hazy sun might well catch a surfer or a swimmer on their personal embrace with the ocean, and the title track off this album sums those thoughts up perfectly.
This is indeed a magical album, one that will hold dearly in the memory of many who have found solace at this juncture. Listen to the peace filled refrains on guitar of Haugen on pieces like Waves, a track that has an energy all of its own, and swiftly flowing into the arms of the ambience of Peaceful Dream.
The gentle performances by the artist hold strong right throughout the album, and as we reach one of my favourite pieces in Beyond, we can find an almost transcendent bliss to float with. The guitar of Haugen is sublime at creating a pastiche of magical moments to enjoy, like the organic tones of the composition Fjord, or the pool of musical tranquillity created on the long form offering entitled Wanderlust.
There can be no doubt that you will find fluency and calm in abundance on the album, and as you revel in the delicacy of the last arrangement called Path Of Light, you will be already thinking about just leaving this album on repeat, it is that good.
There is no questioning that once more Chris Haugen has created an album of outstanding natural beauty with this latest work entitled First Light. The performances are sublime and beautifully produced and completely redolent of the subject matter, so if you like the gentle, textured peace that the guitar can bring, I can suggest that this First Light just has to be part of your music collection as soon as possible.