By Elizabeth Zakaim
Inspiration struck Chris Lundy in his stuffy dorm room on the eighth floor of Travers Hall, and he hasn’t stopped songwriting since.
The senior interactive multimedia major soon evolved from songwriter to performer, and at CUB Alt’s Student Soloist Night on Tuesday, Feb. 7, he shared his musical inspirations with the eager crowd in Traditions.
“I had been toying with the idea (of performing) for a while,” Lundy said.
Prior to this recent performance, he hadn’t been onstage in a couple of years. Once his performance started, though, he felt more grateful than nervous at having the chance to share his music with an appreciative audience.
“I was very in the moment and felt comfortable telling these stories (through music),” Lundy said.
CUB Alt hosts student soloist and band nights on a biweekly basis in the Decker Social Space or Traditions, according to Max Falvey, CUB Alt co-chair and a sophomore communication studies major.
CUB Alt posts about the events on Facebook and invites students from the College to perform. The first people to respond get a slot, according to Dana Gorab, CUB Alt co-chair and a sophomore communication studies major.
The three performers scheduled for the night each had 30-minute sets comprising covers and original songs.
When it comes to writing lyrics, Lundy doesn’t look too far to draw inspiration. He usually writes about his daily experiences.
“I tend to pull inspiration from real life, whether it be something I or a friend is going through at the time or in the past,” Lundy said. In between the cheerful strums of his ukulele, he often dedicated his pieces to his friends sitting in the audience.
However, Lundy said some of the inspiration for other pieces seems to come out of nowhere.
“Some of my songs are written about absolutely nothing, which goes back to… how dynamic and personal writing music can be,” he said.
Lundy wasn’t the only performer with a lighthearted sound and knack for creativity.
Amidst the clanging of dishes and the chatter of Traditions’s diners and kitchen staff, junior statistics major Ethan Crasto performed a few covers and originals.
“This is my first time doing something like this,” he said as he took the stage.
But his apprehension wasn’t necessary –– his friends loved his performance.
“This was his first time performing in front of an audience like this, and I’m really proud of him for having the courage to go through with it,” said Theresa Pham, a junior computer engineering major.
Chris Moncada, a junior communication studies major who has been writing songs since he was 14, took Traditions on a more serious musical journey with originals like “Loathing” accompanied by heavy acoustic-electric guitar.
Moncada’s sound held everyone’s attention, even the Traditions staff, who could be heard singing parts of Moncada’s melody in between his songs.
Moncada’s sound was something both consciously crafted and a product of spontaneous inspiration.
“In this age where everyone has the tools to record and promote their music, a lot of content is being thrown out there,” he said.
He said he is working on finding his niche in the world of songwriting, while simultaneously creating his own musical style, a challenge most singer-songwriters face.
“A lot of times, people try to stay in safe zones with their music because it’s easy and more mainstream,” Moncada said. “What inspires me to write is the opportunity to sound different, but still stand out.”
The performers were grateful to CUB Alt and the audience for the chance to showcase their creativity.
“The night went better than I could have hoped,” Lundy said. “I was in the company of friends doing what I love and having a great time. I’m very thankful for the opportunity to share my music.”