Digital leader, online personality and budding host Chris Burkmenn is on the verge of something big. Through his newly launched CBEX (a revamp of his former website), he gives struggling Nashville artists an opportunity for exposure, through giving them a wholly unique platform to showcase their music. "I began CBEX orignally because I wanted to be a host and I never had the ability to do it on tv," Burkmenn shares (exclusively) with NashvilleGab. Since the web series launche in late 2013, he has gone on to acheive remarkable things in 11 months, including interviews with many promising singer-songwriters.
"I wanted to start it because I felt that if a network wouldn't give me a platform then I would do it another way. I worked for CMT Hot 20 Countdown and we used the lunch as a platform to launch the webshow, but we were not able to use that for very long," he continues. "I then decided that I wanted to do it around the city of Nashville and show off each artist in a different light. I was so fortunate to work with some outstanding people. Andy Burchett does the videography for the show and really help bring to life the vision."
And his vision is clearly becoming a dazzling reality. Some of his interviews include Evan Gibb, Lancifer, Kayla Woodson and Spencer Kane. "From there we began filming interviews with artists and I really realized how much the new artists get little to no attention. I felt that when I really reflected on the vision of the show that we strive to Empower the artist. Help give them a platform for their talent to really shine. We do an interview and a performance with each artist. Alison Goedde does a fantastic job of putting these videos together and making sure the artist is represented well," he says.
Despite his success, he has surely endured rocky stops along the way. "Throughout this journey, I have really realized how much I am fighting for the dreamer in us all," he notes. "Each of us has the ability to chase our dreams, but often times we don't because we do not know where or how to start. We need someone to go before us and show us that it can be done, and I truly believe that I am pioneering the unknown. Webshows are the future and CBEX is really doing that and trust me, it has not been easy, but very rewarding."
As he heads into the future, he has impressive goals of where he wants to go next. "My goal for CBEX is to be a place where people goal to find out what is upcoming in music. To be that distribution place for these new artists, and for them to want to be on our show. We are constantly brainstorming and figuring out new ways on how we can empower the artist, and I love it. It keeps us motivated, and driven to where we want to take this. Each artist I interview, I believe in and I wouldn't have them on if I didn't believe."
He adds, "I would really like to see so many different things come from this, I'd really love for us to go even further and be a Nashville staple be a place where any artist can come on the show and really go even further in their career. Labels are really a thing of the past and these artists are mostly independent which is great, because they can make decisions for themselves.
Burkmenn has also partnered with Talkapolis, a social media-driven campaign to bring fans' favorite online show directly to Facebook and Twitter feeds. "Talkapolis has given CBEX a huge platform, it has allowed us to reach close to 450,000 people each week in the TN area and we are growing in the Atlanta area as well," he says of the opportunity. "This is a huge accomplishment, and I am really excited to see where we go next. We also have been lucky enough to partner with Aud Co Nashville, and the incredible My Fans Demand app. We are reaching to new heights and continuing to look for interested partners, and sponsors."
Keep up-to-date on all the CBEX latest on the official website.
Photos courtesy of Chris Burkmenn
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