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By Pamtera, guitarist and lead singer of Boneyard
What got you into music, and if you had not gotten into music what would you be doing today? When I was 15 my high school boyfriend played guitar. I wanted to learn so badly so he taught me some chords and eventually gave me his guitar, which I still have.
What do you like to do when your not playing music and how does that influence your creativity? I have a button business and I am involved in roller derby. I love meeting new and interesting people.
How long has your band been around? Boneyard started out as a hard rock cover project in 2015. The last 4 years we started to transition into writing original music.
Where are you based out of and how did that influence your music? We are based out of Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. Our long cold winters provide me with a lot of time inside to write and rehearse.
How did you come up with the name of your band and what does it mean to you. In the beginning, while we were learning cover songs, one of our members listened to Sirius satellite radio a lot and noticed the Boneyard channel played most of the songs we did. We decided to use Boneyard as our name mainly for familiarity to the style of material we were covering. Once we started writing our own material, and headed in an all original direction, we kept the same name due to the following we had built up. I still enjoy listening to Ozzy’s Boneyard and crack a smile whenever they say our name.
Tell me about the best and worst shows you have played. Our best show was outside at our City Hall here in Edmonton, it was beautiful weather, we played on a flatbed truck and got some great photographs. It was awesome to have all ages watching us, dancing, and jumping into the water fountain during our set. Our worst show was during a winter snowstorm. We had just started our set when we blew a breaker on stage and the panel box was in an office that no one had keys to. The owner of the bar was unable to come immediately to open the door so we ripped it off its fucking hinges.
Tell me about your favorite venue to play at, and do you have any places you want to play that you haven't already? Any outdoor venue is my favorite hands down. I always wanted to play the Gorge in Washington State.
If you could play any show with any lineup who would be on the ticket? I would love to play with Annihilator and Deep Purple, though I’m not sure those two bands would ever be on the same bill.
What is some advice that you would give to someone who is just getting into playing in a band? Practice and take lessons, record audio and video of your band and accept constructive criticism for yourself. Have fun and try not to burn any bridges.
If you could go back in time and give yourselves advice, what would it be? Although our past cover gigs did help to pay for some recording costs, I wish we would have transitioned into writing originals earlier.
Of your songs which one means the most to you and why? Oathbreaker, the title track is my favorite song. I love the way the song helps to make you feel the disappointment, anger, and sadness of a time when someone close to you breaks an oath. I feel Oathbreaker can have many different meanings for the listener.
Which songs are your favorite to play and which get requested the most? I love playing Fates Warning and Rat Race gets requested the most.
What is the creative process for the band, and what inspires you to write your music? The main songwriter is our bass player Dennis Cooke. He will often show up for rehearsal with a whole song already written, or a couple new riffs. We jam it out, record it, listen back and make any changes as we feel are needed. Just the joy and struggles of daily life can provide inspiration.
What kinds of messages do you like to get across in your music? Even though some of our songs may not have a particular message, we try and add an element of positivity in our lyrics.
Do you ever have disagreements in your band, and how do you get past them? Fuck yeah! We often have to vote on things to come to a decision. We are honest and try to respect each other’s opinion.
What are your plans for the future, and do you have anything that you want to spotlight that's coming up? The first single, Fates Warning, will be released on October 17th. The album, Oathbreaker, will drop on October 24th. Live CD and Vinyl release parties will follow shortly thereafter.