182 – Christian Matthew Cullen: Keyboardist, Composer, Sound Designer, Creative, Reaching Outside Your Comfort Zone
Christian Matthew Cullen started his professional career as a session musician and sideman for Jim Peterik (Ides Of March, Survivor) in his Wold Stage band where he gained the opportunity to play with notable rock artists such as Alan Parsons, Don Barnes (.38 Special), Kevin Cronin (REO Speedwagon), Kip Winger, Joe Lynn Turner ( Deep Purple, Rainbow), Mickey Thomas (Starship), and Kelly Keagy (Night Ranger).
Christian took over the keyboard chair in Night Ranger in early 2007. Joining up with original members Jack Blades and Brad Gillis, Reb Beach (Winger) and later, Joel Hoekstra (TSO, Rock Of Ages) , he toured the world supporting rock giants Journey, Styx, Boston, REO Speedwagon, Peter Frampton, Heart, Alice Cooper, Steve Miller and Eddie Money.
Christian launched a sample company called Sound Famous. It’s for Apple MainStage and features iconic synth sounds from classic records like Prince’s 1999 using analog and virtual synths captured through analog gear and processed to sound exactly like the records they came from.
Currently, he composes music and creates sound design for video games, animation and advertising. He has produced music for acclaimed clients such as Smirnoff, Party City, Hollywood Casino, The Kentucky Derby, Jeep, and the Florida Gators and award winning music for children’s media and toys for Tomy, Alex, Infantino, Fisher-Price, Radio Flyer, and Learning Curve.
In the episode, Christian talks about:
Recording with Abe Laboriel Jr
Being open to ideas in when recording
The benefits of “live tracking”
Defining the difference between composing and sound design
Finding out what your truly passionate about
Transitioning from live work to sessions and “in town” work
The influence of technology in the way we work and produce
The power of a peer to peer network to create work
Discovering new opportunities when you reach outside your comfort zone