I’ve been listening to Avigdor Zahner-Isenberg, known musically as Avi Buffalo, since I was 12 years old when my dad handed me the CD – and he has been one of my favorites since. His premier, self titled EP Avi Buffalo – which was released when he was only 19 – became a swirling and dreamy guide to love and fear and teenagedom. His song “Summer Cum”– a euphoric ballad of summer love (and its loss) became something I could not yet understand but desperately wanted to. The album seemed a perfect road guide for me of what was to come.
In 2014 when Avi Buffalo released their second album, At Best Cuckold, I was sixteen and a sophomore in high school. The ideas of the first EP were understood and had become consecrated – I faced a new set of experiences I could not wait to understand and live through.
Avi has six upcoming shows in Los Angeles and Portland which can be found in his Instagram bio
INTERVIEW WITH AVI BUFFALO
CONOR (HIGHLARK): First off, I want to just say how much I love your first, self titled EP from 2010. What were some of the inspirations and things you were thinking about behind this album?
AVI BUFFALO: Thank you! I appreciate it. Most of that EP were my first sonic explorations in recording and songwriting. I did most of them with a computer microphone and whatever instruments I had around that I could play a little myself.
CONOR: How did you first get into music and songwriting?
AVI BUFFALO: Music was in my life before I was born, since I come from a fortunately musically-driven family. When I started playing guitar seriously I was around 13, and songwriting came naturally to me the more music I discovered that leaned in that direction.
CONOR: What were some of your first songs about?
AVI BUFFALO: They were sort of existential romantic songs I guess. Stuff about me analyzing my own perspective and position in relationships with others and my own feelings. A good start I think.
CONOR: Your Instagram features some pretty crazy drawings – what are you trying to convey in these sketches?
AVI BUFFALO: I think with those i’m trying to convey my own experiences as a person, lately attempting to find ways to grow and love better, and to face my fears and sadness. Sometimes they express sexual or romantic desires, experimental poetic devices, and the absurdity of expressing oneself on social media. I think I like to think of them as “visual poetry”. I also want to just create things that people will feel and that take them out of their ordinary scrolling activities, and maybe to be some kind of boost out of the mundane everyday life.
CONOR: Your last album, At Best Cuckold, was released in 2014 – when, or can we, expect a new one?
AVI BUFFALO: I’m currently salivating about making a new album, and i’m working on writing and recording songs. No due date, might be soon, might be later. I’m just staying open and busy with music.
CONOR: What are some of your favorite albums at the moment?
Currently I’ve been listening to “A Wizard, A True Star” by Todd Rundgren, “Turiya Sings” by Alice Coltrane, “Chet Baker Sings” by Chet Baker, Arca‘s new music in which he’s singing in Spanish, Leoš Janáček‘s Sinfonietta, “Lovers” by Nels Cline, Suburban Lawns‘ self-titled, “This Is My Country” by The Impressions, “Western Suite” by Jimmy Giuffre, “Concert By The Sea” by Errol Garner, “Bundles” by The Soft Machine, “Stellar Regions” by John Coltrane just to name a few…..
CONOR: What do you do when you’re not playing music?
AVI BUFFALO: Listening to music, eating, I like to read, going for walks is nice, lots of other stuff, sex when I can get it, etc.
CONOR: What can we expect from you down the road?
AVI BUFFALO: From Avi Buffalo there is new music and more live performances! Hopefully some art installations and other creative projects too. I’m also looking to do some more production work. I just finished an album with an awesome artist called Litronix and that is set for release June 16th.