The (Excellent) Band Behind The Viral "Guy On a Buffalo" Videos: Possum Posse
Gimmicks and insipid meme-generating fare can rockets a video into viral heaven, but it can also pigeonhole the video's creator. Austin's The Possum Posse are a crack band of roots musicians that, thanks to an ingenious mix of comedy, musicianship and pure silliness, have millions upon millions of YouTube views under their belts thanks to their brilliant "Guy On a Buffalo" series of videos. They're also a band that holds their own with any of the great, young rustic acts currently plying their craft in the Capital City along with Shakey Graves, Whiskey Shivers and the Crooks, among others.
Courtesy of The Possum Posse
Now, it's doubtful that the Jomo Edwards five-piece that formed in 2002 would receive millions of hits, dollars or anything else on the power of their musicianship alone. That's not a knock on them at all. In fact, the band's Kickstarter-funded album, released in January, Let's Ride, Boys, contains the ramshackle spirit of the popular videos, but also represents a band that knows their way around any sort of tune that can be remotely related to the country category. With nary a tale of a range-roaming buffalo rider, Edwards and crew, along with producer Cody Braun of Reckless Kelly made a record (with a tune featuring the vocals of 1100 Springs' Matt Hillyer from Dallas) that stands alone, without the help of YouTube or viral virtuosity.
Edwards knows that it's important for the future of the band to take advantage of the web-based fan-base in order to spread the band's non-Buffalo music. In fact, in Austin, there's a band that's fought through the novelty-hit glory to become a revered act, and also a band that crumbled under the pressure of recreating the magic that captured the public's sense of irony for three minutes. The Gourds first gained wide attention with a backwoods take on Snoop Dogg's "Gin and Juice," while Dynamite Hack garnered giggles back in 2000 with their laid-back indie-rock version of Eazy-E's "Boyz-n-The-Hood," only to really never be heard from again.
"One thing the Gourds had going for them, that I think and hope we have going for us, is that the rest of their music is creative, interesting and worth checking out," says Edwards, from his home is Austin earlier this week. "Once you listen to the rest of their music, and check out their live show, you figure out that 'Gin and Juice' is only the tip of the creative iceberg. The Dynamite Hack guys had some interpersonal issues that I think kept them from moving forward, and we're lucky to have very few issues like that. We have a ton of fun onstage and take a lot of pride in our non-buffalo music. All we can hope for is that people who like "Guy on a Buffalo" will come out to watch us play live, expecting something that comes from the same creative place. We're pretty confident we can win them over if they do."