Make your own opportunities
The music industry is filled with examples of raggs to riches stories, inspiring tales of how some managed to pursue their dreams in spite of the odds and the lack of opportunities. None of them is more exemplary than Krassy Halatchev’s. Now a successful bass player, singer and talented songwriter, Krassy grew up in the rigid, state controlled society that was pre-1990 Communist Bulgaria, his only escape at the time; music. Him and his friends, who were self-proclaimed music maniacs, became obsessed with British rock bands of the time, such as Pink Floyd, Genesis, The Police and Depeche Mode. Aided by his friends, he managed to scrape together enough money to buy himself a Fender Music Master bass guitar, a purchase that only pushed him deeper into his musical journey. For the next coming years, Krassy and his band mates put all their time and energy into their passion, frequently playing gigs in the local bars and garages. Though musical opportunities were sparse with the political situation at the time, a breeze of luck came their way when the iron curtain fell in 1989, followed the next year with the dissolution of the communist government in Bulgaria.
Krassy took this opportunity to leave Bulgaria in favor of the West, where his dream of being a successful musician could actually be achieved. On an ice-cold Winter day of 1990, Krassy and his bandmates arrived in Montreal, Canada, where they would continue pursuing their musical ambitions under the name of The Clouds. They became well known in the Canadian underground scene playing 90’s influenced psychedelic rock. Pushing their music as much as they could they would perform in the local clubs and even played regularly on the Subway station. In the mid-90’s, after much magazine coverage and two LPs The Clouds split up, which led Krassy to his next opportunity as the bass player of the band Chiwawa. Here he managed to work with producer Steve Whitfield (the Cure, the Missions, the Trash can Sinatras…) who produced their first album, the Sick World of Yona at the Mission’s studio in Bristol. With this Krassy gained the attention of the press, as the bass player, singer and main composer of the band. Under the name Icicle, Krassy started a solo project, launching Resurgence in 2014, followed by Theorems in 2015. These albums show a mix of pop and funky tempos while holding some rock roots in a blend of fresh, innovative and defiant work.
“Websites like Music Gateway are instrumental in helping me connect with like-minded musicians who want to work with a vocalist remotely.” - Kat Howell
Make New Connections
More than 20 years after his start in the music industry, Kassy is still trying to find new ways of pursuing his musical ambitions. Busy as always, he told us that he is “working on not 2 but 3 new records (LPs) simultaneously. I have been rather inspired lately, so I am laying it all down.” For the last months, he has been working with vocalist Kat Howell who he met through Music Gateway. Kat, who has had her voice recorded for music in several American shows, as well as UK radio and a brand new MTV talent show that should be aired around Christmas, told us about her networking experience.
“I complete a lot of session work from my home studio. Websites like Music Gateway are instrumental in helping me connect with like-minded musicians who want to work with a vocalist remotely. The project I worked on with Krassy is a great example of how Music Gateway can connect musicians from all over the world, creating the opportunity to find the exact fit for your music.”
Know What You Want
We asked Krassy what his main bit of advice would be for any new artists who might be trying to get a slice of the cake in the music industry. He quite unequivocally pointed out that you must “Know exactly what you want, why you want it and how are you going to go about achieving it. Always do your homework.” and as well to “Work on your sales skills. They too are an artform. (I am still at it myself).” We can only hope that Krassy and Kat’s business relation lasts for many years and that both artist’s manage to make fruitful connections with like-minded musicians.
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