Chris Watson, frontman for organ trio Retrophonics, is a multi-instrumentalist from Fort Worth, TX. As a sideman, Watson has performed and recorded with dozens of artists around Texas, as well as with Robert Randolph and the Family Band on keys and Hammond Organ.
Retrophonics: Chris Watson is sort of rebranding himself. After playing the North Texas circuit for most of his professional life as bandleader of the soulful nine-piece the Chris Watson Band, he’s now fronting the Retrophonics, a jazzy group whose debut recording, a self-titled EP, came out in May. Before the global pandemic, the group had played a few crowded rooms and received a good response, said keyboardist/bassist Watson, which encouraged him and his bandmates –– drummer Luke Callaway and guitarist Camden Gonzales –– to release the recording. The tracks are pretty steamy. The ballads “Beautiful,” “Just for Tonight,” and “Stay the Night” reflect what Watson calls a romantic theme. The other two songs –– the instrumentals “Lucky Penny” and “Cornbread” –– are scorchers with horns and are kind of Stevie Wonder-esque.