Kirsten McCord, born in Athens, GA is a cellist, producer and composer. She grew up in Lexington, Kentucky, London, England, and Westchester County in New York. Kirsten studied at Manhattan School of Music for pre-college, spent summers with The Juilliard School and got her BA in Music at SUNY Purchase. Among her teachers were Ardyth Alton (trained by Leonard Rose) and Aldo Parisot from the faculty at Yale who was deemed by Janos Starker “the best cello teacher of our time”.
As a teen, Kirsten felt bound by her strict classical upbringing but began to break out of it when she discovered that there were genres of music that would be more fulfilling in a different way. Very impressed by a wide array of music, she decided to create something new for herself and perform it live with other people. Kirsten has collaborated with various indie, experimental, electronic, punk and rock bands and performed in art installations organized by amazing visual artists. One of her first significant acts, Rex (ex-Codeine members), were early pioneers of Williamsburg’s music and art scene. During her time with Rex, Kirsten began to make a name for herself in the indie rock world as she developed her eloquent style of playing. As a teenager, she was deeply influenced by the films and soundtracks of David Lynch and Sergio Leone. She was also taken by the visuals and use of sound in “Koyaanisqatsi: Life Out of Balance”, “Eraserhead” and “The Man Who Fell to Earth”. One of her main passions is writing music for the moving image.
Thurston Moore (Sonic Youth) released Kirsten’s first solo album on his label (Ecstatic Peace) and she has done many recordings since then. Her resume includes studio work and live performances with Elliott Smith, Vic Chesnutt, Jarboe (Swans), and Tribeca Film Festival Award winning documentary “Give Up Tomorrow”. Her Ecstatic Peace album was met with critical praise. Byron Coley (American music critic and writer for Spin Magazine, Forced Exposure, The Wire, Arthur) wrote of her “When this New York based multi instrumentalist actually sent a tape, it was of the music you now hold in your hands – a very difficult to peg mix of vocal-less sounds, textures and gestures, with equal debts to the original Phillip Glass ensemble, early OMD, and the glass harmonica compositions of Benjamin Franklin.”
Currently, among doing other musical projects, Kirsten writes and produces music for the yoga community in NYC and also plays live cello in yoga classes.
For a list of musicians, labels and work Kirsten has been involved with click here: