Live & Direct With The Buckle Downs
The Buckle Downs in the WYEP Studios on June 23rd, 2017. Pittsburgh soul & rock band The Buckle Downs have just released their debut album Hard Truths. The band is led by powerhouse vocalist Kiki Brown, who guitarist Ernie Francestine had his eye on for awhile to be in this band. "We played together in another group, townsppl. We had talked about starting a soul-type thing... and then you know, it matured into us looking for a singer. I told everyone 'I know who it's gonna be!' I texted her and I used her full name, Markila, and she was like 'Don't call me that!" I was like "OK!" because we were not very tight at the time, but now we are tight. So, she came on and after the first practice it was good."
Brown, who comes from Warren, OH explained her path from her home to Pittsburgh. "For the most part, you grow up singing in the church. Then you end up in every high school choir imaginable. We ended up creating high school choirs because we were bored. That's where I joined my first band. I was in A Band of Six, we travelled all around the state. We broke up after high school. Then in college it was nothing, dead, no musical experience... I didn't start do anything band related until I moved here. I started around 2012. Then these guys told me they needed a singer and I was like "OKAAAAY!" And that's how that started."
The new album was produced by Jake Hanner (Donora), who the band really enjoyed working with. Kiki attempts to put into words what it was like to work with Hanner, "If I had to describe it in one word, it would be "Awesome." He's just the easiest person to work with. He's interesting because I don't understand how you have that much machinery around you and you know what all of it is for. There's like 20 million buttons and he just pushes them all and it sounds great. I asked him to substitute Beyonce for me, but he wouldn't do that!"
- Let It Ride
- Until Next Time
- With Love