hristopher Willits occupies a unique corner of the electronic-music universe—hovering above the intersection of electronic production’s nuts and bolts and a wide-open creative mind. “I am a conduit of the process, a kind of gardener,” he says. “I simply imagine, intuit, respond and do the work laid before me.” Willits’ tireless responding and doing and working has produced 20 albums in 10 years—solo and in collaboration with artists including Ryuichi Sakamoto, Matmos, and Taylor Deupree—and an organic, multi-faceted sound that expands like the vines of an electro-acoustic kudzu plant. Christopher Willits is a teacher, a label owner (the experimental hub Overlap.org), a meditator, a tech geek, a visual/new media artist, and virtuosic musician in one. In other words, there’s no one out there quite like him.
Willits designs much of his own software, and his music is a holistic universe in which all elements are interconnected; he folds his guitar
lines into bleary, unrecognizable shapes and polyrhythmic textures, adding strokes of percussion, horns, and his own voice until the whole glows with an earthly inner light. A full list of Christopher Willits’ releases and accomplishments would take up considerable column space, but a beginner’s guide to Willits includes 2002’s Folding, and the Tea (his debut on 12k), 2006’s landmark Surf Boundaries (his first full-length on Ghostly International), 2008’s Ocean Fire (Willits’ collaboration with renowned pianist / composer Ryuichi Sakamoto), and 2009’s Live on Earth Vols. 1 & 2 (a pair of self-released live albums dedicated to his fans and supporters).
Christopher Willits’ newest record on Ghostly International, 2010’s Tiger Flower Circle Sun, is his most technologically complex yet—it’s also his most organic, drifting skyward in a swell of ambient hums and subtle polyrhythms. With an imagination as blissfully overactive as our friend Willits’, the only place to go is up.
Video shot and created by Christopher Willits 2009-2010.