Buckman Coe
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Buckman Coe

Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada | Established. Jan 01, 2009 | INDIE | AFM

Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada | INDIE | AFM
Established on Jan, 2009
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It is important to note, when introducing Vancouver-based yogi and folk artist Buckman Coe, that the term “yogi” should take first position. The singer-songwriter’s latest release, By the Mountain’s Feet, is one of the most optimistic albums I’ve heard in some time, laden with the personifying, loving, at-one-with-the-earth type of language that one would come across in any yoga studio. But this isn’t to suggest that Coe is some sort of contrived act or incapable artist. In fact, his message of unity and simplicity is delivered quite naturally, and simple associations with the likes of Ben Harper won’t do him justice.

Nevertheless, the album isn’t devoid of aggravated undertones. On tracks such as “The Apocalypse is Not Guaranteed” and “Paranoia,” Coe’s frustration with the mishandling of the world is evident. On “Paranoia” he sings, “Oil spills are the price of their greed/ They are selling arms to watch both sides bleed.” There is a mood of lamentation in the album’s second half, apparent in tracks such as “Brother” and “Leaving Samsara.” But his soothing vocals maintained throughout can only be imagined as sung with a smile on his face.
Diverse musical arrangements and intricacies complete the album; Coe’s skills on guitar are on display, along with an impressive backing band complete with a range of percussion, keyboards, mandolin, banjo, violin, cello and even a mandotar.
Coe’s album is steeped in nature, lamenting today’s sorrows while hoping for tomorrow. It’s put best on “Promise,” when he sings: “Truly great humanity/ If we look inside we will find it.” Coe should have a future in North America’s folk scene if this album is any indication of his potential. For now, it’s a good dose of optimism for those rainy Vancouver days. - Discorder


Coe gets spacey on the last track of this five-song EP, Kingdom Come, stretching the song out in a whirl of edgy, echoing dub. It’s exhilarating, possibly points to the future while simultaneously making you wish he’d take such chances more often. As it is, he’s refined and made stronger his mix of reggae, soul and folk while his spirituality and idealism remain strong. Though he doesn’t really sound like Michael Franti, Jack Johnson or Damian Rudd, Coe is in their company, mixing soft pop with a conscience. - The Province


Buckman Coe is a world traveler, muti-talented musician and singer-songwriter. He is a social activist based in Vancouver, B.C. and pursuesan ecological approach to music making as well as social activism. He is musically influenced by the Roots-Rock-Reggae formula. His recent Crow's Nest EP is not an introduction but follow-up to last year's well-received, full-length album; By the Mountains Feet (2012). The songs on Crow's Nest are acoustic and flavoured with world-beat soul and reggae infusions, Middle Eastern melodies and Flamenco guitar riffs. As an independent, he has a history of live performance and could very well explode onto the Canadian and International summer music festival scene unannounced. Therefore without further ado, I invite you to discover Buckman Coe and his good-time, emotional balladry and quality-filled, addictive vocals. All lyrics on the Crow's Nest EP are written by Buckman Coe, and the album is produced by Jason Kechely.

By Tristin Norenberg-Goodmanson
Mar 10, 2013 - !earshot


By the Mountain’s Feet (Independent)

Clearly not a man content to have just a single iron in the fire, Buckman Coe keeps plenty busy when he’s not on-stage or in the studio. In addition to being one of those artists who make genre-jumping seem effortless, he’s also a certified yogi, eco-psychologist, and poet.

If this were 1973, back when singer-songwriters ruled the earth, Coe wouldn’t have much time for side pursuits—with a couple of breaks and a bit of AM radio airplay, he’d be busy cashing gold-record royalty cheques and house-hunting in Laurel Canyon. If that sounds hyperbolic, it shouldn’t, because By the Mountain’s Feet, his second full-length, is really that good. Working with a supporting cast that includes Vancouver music-scene vets Brian Minato on bass, Steve Dawson on pedal steel, and Paul Rigby on guitars, Coe dabbles in everything from down-home Americana to sun-sweetened folk to soul-drenched blues.

Aside from the fact that the dude sounds completely thrilled and blessed to be alive, what stands out are the gorgeous little touches—like the calypso-tinted guitars in the lite-and-breezy “Not So Farfetched” and the molasses-dipped harmonies in the wonderful country comedown “Plot Thick It Grows”.

Because this isn’t 1973, Coe isn’t going to find a ready-made, built-in audience for By the Mountain’s Feet, which sounds like it was professionally recorded at the Record Plant three decades ago instead of in rainy old Vancouver in the 2010s. That’s a shame, because if you enjoy the laid-back likes of Ben Harper and Jack Johnson, odds are good that you’re going to love this unrelentingly positive, completely accomplished triumph. - Georgia Straight - Mike Usinger


Buckman Coe voted by the readers of the Georgia Straight as Second Best Unsigned Band in Vancouver. - Georgia Straight


Folk singers need something to sing about, so it’s fitting that Edmonton, Canada’s Buckman Coe has pursued several interests besides music in his young life. He’s studied sociology, psychology, and ecology in school, as well as delving deeply into yoga and its teachings. While his 2010 album Latest Waking doesn’t address any of these topics directly, you can definitely sense undercurrents of his many pursuits. His lyrics show a keen understanding of human emotion; a concern for the Earth, and his music reflects a Zen-like calm and inner peace. Recorded mostly in his apartment, Latest Waking displays a mastery of home-recording technology. The average listener would never guess this album wasn’t produced in a lavish studio with a small army of backing musicians and singers.

As a songwriter, Coe favors bright, shimmering melodies in the style of Paul Simon or his fellow Canadian, Neil Young, played with trebly conviction on acoustic guitar. The most distinctive feature is his voice is a gossamer falsetto that recalls the grace and elegance of the late Jeff Buckley. His lyrics eschew the simplistic rhyming couplets of much folk music for intricate and sometimes subversive passages that go much deeper than the easy-listening veneer of his melodies.

“Give Up The Fright,” the album’s opening track, offers a prime example of Coe’s wry lyrical machinations. At first listen, the album’s romantic arrangement of finger picked acoustic guitar, deeply resonant violin, and drum loop, along Coe’s sexy come-hither vocal, gives the impression that this is a simple love song. But when Coe sings, “how I wish I could tie you down,” is he only talking about emotional commitment? The verse continues, “Oh girl, with your kinks like mine, surely that is hard to find.” It’s a subtle, playful double-entendre, but it adds an edge you don’t expect from such a pretty Lite-FM melody.

Coe’s interest in psychology comes into play on “Lift Yourself Up.” With a sparse arrangement of plucked acoustic guitar, a hint of glockenspiel, a whisper of percussion, and his sweet falsetto vocal, he sings of how “everybody’s got their sob story down,” and how depression is as easy to find as “the craters on the moon.” The song becomes an entreaty to look around and enjoy what we have; “it may come as a surprise that you’re doing really fine.” The song works like an entire self-help volume delivered in four and a half minutes of pleasant listening. “And Love Again” tells the story of someone who’s ready to open his heart again after the death of a loved one, a very common experience that many listeners will relate to. Again, Coe uses the sweet, sad sound of violin as a counterpart to his yearning vocal as he professes, “I’m ready to live and love again.”

In New York, there was a radio station that used to advertise “love songs, nothing but love songs.” Their programmers would have embraced “Mistakes And Victories,” a six and a half minute symphony of devotion, as Coe combines universal feelings of desire with specific memories of an unforgettable first date. A first kiss, the sound of the ocean, a heart beating so hard that ribs ache are the details that Coe uses to bring these memories to life. But Coe also has a vivid imagination, as displayed on “Flee With Me,” which conjures the images of a nuclear apocalypse (“the buildings collapsed with a horrifying sound, we crawled through the rubble when the heat died down”) as a metaphor for an undying love that can survive anything. The ashen faces of fellow survivors flash past as Coe and his lover seek a place to wait until the sun breaks through the post-nuclear winter and “we’ll plant our fields and sing under the stars at last.” Many songwriters would use some sort of sci-fi synthesizer effects or a harder rock edge on a lyric like this, but Coe sticks to his dreamy falsetto and folk-pop instrumentation, which juxtaposes brilliantly against the stark lyric.

“Disappear Into Love” serves up a musical change of pace as Coe switches into jam band mode, adding a funky bass part and up tempo melody. The lyrics are playful, and the mood is upbeat until Coe brings it all together in a bluesy, expansive bridge. Dave Matthews fans, take note: this one’s for you. A slinky, bluesy, minor key melody adds an ominous note on “Off The Beaten Path,” an ecological parable. While the song’s message is ultimately optimistic, there’s a palpable sense of dread communicated in both the music and vocal that runs through this song, as big oil and bulldozers encroach on our environment.

It seems a forgone conclusion that women will make you crazy, but “Crazy-Making Woman” drives that point home as Coe sings of a seductress who bewitches and bedazzles him, to the point where “I stopped drinking, it was too much to feel.” There’s a bit of Bob Marley in the lilting bridge, but what stands out here is when Coe brings everything together with the arresting hook, “I’ve been searching f - Jim Testa at Review You


Prepare to be swept away by Vancouver-based Buckman Coe and its debut album “Latest Waking,” released on 3/6/2010. Produced completely independently and without commercial support, “Latest Waking” represents an artist who, without years of training or formal development, has exposed himself completely, offering listeners a sincere, honest, and unaffected first look into the mind of this burgeoning musician.


With beautiful vocal melodies complementing lush soundscapes that evoke the artist’s coastal Vancouver upbringing, “Latest Waking” is a testament to what you can do in the studio without fancy equipment and funding, but with creativity, innovation, a stripped-down approach, and grade-A songwriting.
A relative newcomer to the music industry, Rick Buckman’s history as a student of yoga, mental and physical therapy, and ecopsychology, which connects psychology and ecology, is what informs his songwriting and allows the artist to connect with the listener on a base level. “Latest Waking” represents a turning point in the career of the artist, but Buckman’s motivation, the desire to help people both mentally and physically, remains the common denominator, and the driving force behind his work. The sound, while drawing comparisons to artists like Jeff Buckley, Paul Simon, Ben Harper, and John Lennon, is noticeably inspired by this positive ethos, Buckman’s outlook and desire to help others through his music.
With the debut album set to drop, and a tour of British Columbia in the works, Rick Buckman is ready to spread his music, and continue his personal journey as an artist and musician. Be sure to catch Rick this summer in as many small intimate venues as possible, because after the release of the debut, next year’s tour may be strictly stadiums! - Nerdy Frames - Jasper Gape


Buckman Coe’s Newest Release Latest Waking is brimming with Passionate Melodramatic Acoustic Enjoyment.

I guarantee within the first two songs of Latest Waking you will find yourself transducing the energy which Buckman Coe releases with his music.

What impresses me the most about this album is the vocal capabilities of Buckman Coe. Buckman Coe sings with such a light melodramatic soft tone and follows his vocals with alluring acoustical guitar playing. While singing in a softer tone Buckman Coe is still successful in hitting higher vocal notes but still carries out his soft tone while doing so.

As most songs on the album fall along the borders of soulful folk there are a couple of appearances of a vibrant side of Buckman Coe with the inclusion of the song “Disappear Into Love”. “Disappear Into Love” has a vibrant Jazz Soul Rock sound to it. The tempo changes throughout the song from a fast pace beginning to a slow Jazz/Folk tempo ending. I think the song would have been better off without the extra extension on the song and should have ended when the song was at the faster tempo.

The song which follows “Off The Beaten Path” reminds me of a 70’s rock/pop song. There is as acoustic guitar being picked and with the addition of a couple nice sounding string bends, and also a egg shaker being quietly played in the background. Buckman Coe shows off his higher vocal range right when you get into the song. After the opening verse the song takes a bit of a neat little curve as the song changes in to a Neil Diamond influential sound. While listening to the song for the first time you don’t really know what is going to come next, as the song changes its tune a couple of times throughout the duration.

Buckman Coe has really created an album which touches many different sounds throughout its entirety with the vibrant collaborations within a couple of the songs including “Disappear Into Love”. Then there is the songs which Buckman Coe has layered his poetic and softer side to. Latest Waking is a album if you are looking for a nice soft acoustical listen with the vocals to match. - Kingston Music Reviews


I must say I was surprised when I got to the studio where the party took place. I didn’t know what to expect as we climbed to the second floor. Then the venue opened up, it is spacious with an amazing sound. The name of the venue is Open Studios, one half media art, one half music, and one half party. They are booking events so its a good option if you are having a party. I was there for the CD release of Buckman Coe, a folk rock singer with a soothing voice and a peaceful attitude. He looks like an Asian hippy that enjoys Yoga, art and nature, but probably also knows a deadly form of martial art and philosophy to complement his traits. His style is folk, with hints of blues and even reggae. The band was loud, specially in the second set. The first set was more geared to grassroots folk, the second set put people to dance as more musicians were incorporated to the show. Buckman Coe is a very talented musician that knows how to work the audience, his style is very comforting, it makes you feel secure in a natural ambiance, hypnotized by the visuals, so he built from that woody nature folk to a dancing party. Everybody was dancing at the end. The place was full. It was a great experience, I was impressed with the quality of the musicians specially Debra Jean doing harmonies, Michael Frasier playing the violin and of course Buckman Coe who played the guitar, the banjo and sang. The rest of the musicians were Brian Minato in the bass, Jon Roper on the electric guitar, Sam Cartwright on the drums, Robin Layne vibraphone and percussion, Kori Miyanishi on the bass as well, Doug Gorkoff on the cello and Jason Kechely on the harmonica and vocals. It was a really good ensemble and a very enjoyable show.

The visuals were fantastic, some were psychedelic, some were more abstract, others were black and white while other had explosions of colour, some were shots of nature, astounding nature that we have in British Columbia. The visuals really gave a nice atmosphere to the show. Keep an eye on Buckman Coe and keep reading to know more about him. - VanMusic - Oswaldo Perez Cabrera


Coe sounds like an idealist with a spiritualist’s bent. His mixture of folk with a worldbeat consciousness is attractive, more challenging than the relatively simplistic Jack Johnson, less developed than Michael Franti, not as broad nor as volatile as Ben Harper. He’s in that vein and company, though. Sunny music that nonetheless provokes thought. - The Province - Tom Harrison


Discography

"Crow's Nest" - January, 2013
- Radio play of "Love for All Living Things" and "Stars Over Tokyo"
"By the Mountain's Feet" - March, 2012
- Radio play of "Not So Farfetched", "Honey Child" and "Devil's in You"
"Latest Waking" - February 2010
"Windhorse" - 2006

Photos

Bio

Bridging the worlds of roots, soul, and reggae, Buckman Coe is a passionate believer in the power of music to shape the future. His sun-kissed folk; gospel-tinged soul; intoxicating world-beat melodies, and psychedelic rock sensibility all play a part in providing the sonic platform for Coe’s soulful and conscious lyrics.

Recent highlights include BIGSOUND in Australia, Oregon Country Fair, Calgary Reggae Festival, Edmonton Jazz Society Blues Series, Vancouver International Jazz Festival, Salmon Arm Roots & Blues, Starbelly Jam, Artswells Festival, Edge of the World Festival, opening for Ziggy Marley, and several Cross-Canada & West Coast Tours. Buckman Coe has also been voted best band in Vancouver's Westender and best independent act in the Georgia Straight.

Currently, Buckman is recording his fourth album with Adham Shaikh and Jason Kechely for release in early 2015. This follow up to the Crow's Nest e.p. and By the Mountain's Feet continues Buckman's innovative explorations of genres, bringing together progressive forms of soul, folk, and reggae. His inspiration continues to come from his experiences studying the ecological and social effects of globalization, his work as a yogi, mental health worker, and social citizen. While his music is compared to folks such as Michael Franti, Ben Harper and Jeff Buckley, and informed by the spirits of Bob Marley, Marvin Gaye and John Lennon; Buckman Coe is a force of positive inspiration in his own right, using his voice and music to bring more beauty into the world.
 
"If you enjoy the laid-back likes of Ben Harper and Jack Johnson, odds are good that you’re going to love this unrelentingly positive, completely accomplished triumph" - Georgia Straight

"If this were 1973, back when singer-songwriters ruled the earth, with a couple of breaks and a bit of AM radio airplay, he’d be busy cashing gold-record royalty cheques and house-hunting in Laurel Canyon" - Mike Usinger

Band Members