Crash, formerly known as Christopher Richard, is an Americana, folk, and soul singer from New Orleans. His current gig is playing with Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros, though he recently released a solo album titled Hardly Criminal. We recommend checking it out here.

SFCS: How long have you been with Edward Sharpe?

C: I met Edward Sharpe [pauses], I met Alex and everyone, Jesus, when the first record was being made. I was in a quartet in LA at the time and we were finishing our record in the studio with Aaron and Nico, who recorded the Ed Sharpe record. So I met everyone then. Deadly Syndrome, that’s the band I was in, continued to do our thing. Ed Sharpe went on their journey. And here and there I was able to cross paths and perform as a Magnetic Zero and sing. And I would even bring my own mic stand and cable, because there were already so many inputs. I knew, if there’s any chance of me singing I’ve got to bring my own stuff. Deadly Syndrome, [we did] three records and then we disbanded maybe a couple years ago. I’ve been full time with Ed Sharpe since. But, it’s kind of always been around, we’ve always been buds, me and everyone.  I know the band really well, so it was only natural, when the time came, for me to hop on. And similarly, it’s been sort of a natural transition into the solo stuff, as well.

SFCS: It seems like a lot of you guys do your own side projects.

C: Yeah, well you can’t help it, right? Because everything you’re doing, if it’s a collaboration then it’s probably going to be best in Ed Sharpe. Each of us are always writing. You’re going to overflow these ideas just by default. We’re all kind of going nuts, and at the end of the year we were going to record another Ed Sharpe record, too.

SFCS: Were you with them on the Railroad Revival Tour?

C: There’s a couple of shows that I’ve missed that I know I’ll never hear the end of. That’s one of them. And, of course, it’s the best tour in the books. I didn’t make it, and it’s when I learned a valuable lesson to invite myself next time. Then, I’ll just be there. That was funny. And then it ended in New Orleans.  I would have died and gone to heaven. We’re trying to dream up another tour like that.

SFCS: Who’s on your current playlist?

C: I’ve been really heavily influenced by Arthur Russell over the past few years. I can’t seem to untie myself from it. I just bought Rodrigo Amarante, and he’s a buddy of mine who just finished his solo record that’s really beautiful. It released the same day as mine. The Balfa Brothers, if you guys are familiar with any Cajun music. That or Doug Kershaw. The Balfa Brothers are actually the closest Cajun music had ever come to pop.

SFCS: Have you explored any of the food in San Francisco yet?

C: San Francisco and eating is like a no brainer. It’s amazing food here. It’s really easy to find a great dish in San Francisco. Whether you’re getting a good burrito, a great bakery, or good French cuisine, fusion, stuff like that.

SFCS: If you were a kitchen utensil what would you be?

C: [Whistles twice], man, every time I’m in the kitchen, I’m always in a pan. Pan comes up pretty quickly when thinking kitchen, so I think a pan. Not one of them juicers, for sure.

SFCS: Is Crash your real name?

C: No, Christopher Michael Richard. But no one really calls me that. A lot of my friends call me Crash. I was working on a movie in Louisiana and, let’s just say it wasn’t going so well. So, this woman ordained me Crash. And then it stuck, it fucking stuck. So, yeah, I’m not mad at it. When it came to doing the music obviously that’s a big question of what you’re going to go by. And I tried to think of what to do, do I add a surname to this, do I… And I kept racking my brain about it, and then it was as easy as just Crash. And it’s cool, too, because it’s a little hard to find. And I know maybe that’s the wrong idea, but I’m kind of into it.

SFCS: If you could take credit for any song, to claim it as yours, what would it be?

C: [Whistles], wow, credit for any song? That’s a golden question. Oh man, I’d say, “Your Motion Says” by Arthur Russell. Do you know that song? Check it out, it’s a hell of a song. There’s a million on that list for me, only by nature of what I do. [Check out the song here]

Photo credit Crash Dang Doodle Facebook: