Music Interview: Bonfire Buffalo – Remember Me, Or Survival Serenade

May 11, 2021

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By BRUCE DENNILL

After a three-year hiatus, alternative rock band Bonfire Buffalo are back with the ballad Remember Me. Bonfire Buffalo decided to release the song as a single, saying it is apt for the tough times we are in. Bassist Carl Dedekind explains, “The song, simply put, is about keeping your chin up and holding on during difficult times. Also, the song deals with remembering the legacy of those gone.” Despite the challenges the world has faced over the last year and those directly affecting the band, Bonfire Buffalo have remained positive and persistent hard workers. Asked why it has taken the band so long to release a new single, Carl concludes, “COVID and lockdown has brought things to a grinding halt. On a positive note, we were able to use that time for songwriting and will hopefully start recording our new album soon.”

 

“Influence” is a loaded, often misunderstood concept. An artist may sound similar to another but have no knowledge of them, or be a super-fan of someone whose output is completely different to their own. Who or what was the artist, album, song, era or scene that initially mapped out the road to you becoming a musician?

Ivy: I guess it started with my dad. He was always listening to music – Queen, Cheap Trick, Tracy Chapman, Strawbs and Abba. He is a pianist, so I always used to watch him play. It was magic.

Carl: It’s difficult to narrow it down. However, if I had to choose, it would have to be Nirvana. Their Nevermind and Unplugged In New York albums were pure gold. Marcy Playground & Beck are other notables.

 

Has that changed over the years? If so, how and why, and what are you currently exploring?

Ivy: Certainly. Music evolves for the songwriter, although not necessarily the entertainer. It’s difficult to stay current and create something remarkable.

 

Name one song you wish you’d written or one you’d like to be known as the definitive interpreter of. What makes that song so important?

Ivy: Tom Odell – Another Love. What makes that song so important is the piano, my drug of choice. We don’t hear much piano of that calibre anymore, or songwriting like that!

 

In production and arrangement terms, what are facets of your music and the music you love most by others that you feel are crucially important in terms of creating the mood you’re after or supporting the message of your song?

Ewoud: The format of Remember Me is quite different from ‘traditional’ music formats where you have an intro-verse-chorus-verse and so on. I would describe the structure as a slow burn. The whole first part of the song builds up to the last section – “I’m calling out” – which releases the tension well.

 

Which aspects of your music do you prioritise? For you, would you rather have that your lyrics, your melodies, or your vocals or instrumental work are the are the most memorable parts of your songs?

Ewoud: Each element of a song has its place and function. For our material, the lyrics are a huge priority when it comes to ballads and slow songs, but the actual melody of the vocals and other instrumental melodies are the most important, I would say. You can’t have a weak melody for your lyrics.

 

What’s your favourite piece of gear?

Carl: My Fender Jaguar, she’s a magnificent creature! And my Muff Fuzz pedal!

 

What is the story behind Remember Me – the genesis of the song, the people involved, the muse behind its creation?

Carl: We are always reluctant to give the meaning behind the song, as the song generally means something different to each person. So we tend to leave it up to the listener to decide what it means to them, and take what they want from it. The people involved were the three usual stooges – me, Ivy, and Ewoud. On the drums was Mike Wright, who also produced the song.

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