LA’s very own, Kendra and the Bunnies, a band somewhere between Shakespeare and Alanis Morissette, recently chatted with us about their upcoming album and where indie music is headed.
Great to meet you Kendra And The Bunnies! Please share with us how you developed your extremely unique sound and when did you become an official band?
Thank you so much for inviting me to interview. The sound of Kendra & the Bunnies developed over many years of jamming to southern rock in my car and eccentric singer-songwriter limericks in my headphones. I attend a lot of live music concerts, particularly rock ’n roll. These events have influenced me spiritually as a person and, overall, influenced how I hear people communicate. My music has a very poetic conversational feel; this arrives out of my observatory nature which is derived from my intense training in theatre arts. Kendra & the Bunnies became an official entity in January 2019. The band is still forming; right now, it’s just me, Kendra. I perform as a solo singer-songwriter act. Humorously, before shows, I say something along the lines of, “Hey. I’m Kendra. This is Kendra & The Bunnies. The bunnies are late as per usual. The White Rabbit is always late. Peter Rabbit is back in rehab. Roger Rabbit was just framed for murder. Apparently, Harvey Rabbit is just a hallucination, and Bugs Bunny forgot he was supposed to take a left at Albuquerque… but they told me to go on anyway.”
How do you balance a touring lifestyle with a regular life as an emerging artist?
I am entirely flattered that you are referring to me as a touring musician. I absolutely love traveling, so I find myself at home on the road. I am based in Los Angeles and perform weekly here in town. Between LA gigs, I do travel to perform and be inspired by our beautiful country. In late August, I will be heading up to San Francisco to perform at a singer-songwriter showcase. In October, I will be performing three shows in NYC. Following my NYC excursion, I will be heading to Houston, TX to perform in the city where I grew up. In 2020, I have plans to visit Denver, CO and Portland, OR thus far. Every time that year turn ‘round, bound to cover just a little more ground.
If you had to describe your sound with only one song of yours, which one would you choose?
My song, “Size You Up”, embodies my essence in these regards: The guitar has a 90’s prog-rock, shoe-gaze melodic feel with an overarching psychedelic loop that returns through the use of repeated chord progressions. The lyrics are foreboding, yet still sing of love. That is me in rhyming couplet, hopeful with an edge of disparity. The song is about a certain person who made themselves known to me at the Fare The Well Grateful Dead 50 shows in Santa Clara, CA. It’s a magical time-traveling dance of lovers landing somewhere between Shakespeare and Alanis Morissette.
What are your favourite tracks from your upcoming album?
So I have a few upcoming projects I would like to share about. First, my EP titled of Always, which will be released on all streaming platforms on Friday, September 6; it has 6 tracks. From that project, honestly, I love every single one of the songs, but I think I will mention the track, “Lamental Limerence”. It is a love song that brings tears to my eyes each time I play it. ‘Lamental’ as a word is a combination of ‘lament’ and ‘mental’, and ‘Limerence’ is a word of romantic infatuation. Here is a taste of the lyrics: “[You’re] the reason I try too hard. The reason I’m always looking at the stars. The reason I count the signs that roll by. The reason I need anything. The reason I learned to breathe. The reason I blink twice when you leave.”
Following the release of this EP is my second full-length album titled of Thank You. The tracks I am most jazzed up about on that album are “Buffalo Walk”, “Well-Toiled Routine”, and “Turn On”. The song “Buffalo Walk” is a reflection of my heart. It started as a poem titled “Colorado” that I wrote at a Sound Tribe Sector 9 concert on the stairs at Red Rocks Ampitheatre in Morrison, CO. I had just moved to Denver the day before. For the first time in a long while, I felt freedom from all the preconceived notions I had constructed of myself. I was a buffalo on the roam. The chord progression, I wrote that following Sunday, while in the ‘Buffalo Roaming Range’ at the Rocky Mountain National Arsenal in Commerce City, CO. It is the open wildlife preserve nestled next to Dicks Sporting Goods Field. I had googled, “Good places to enjoy nature in Denver”, and this place showed up at the top of my search. Much to my delight, I found there are buffalo there upon my arrival. My day-to-day living often gives life to my poetry and vice-versa. Also, on September 13, my second book of poetry is being published. It is titled Project Non-Arch: Operation Clown School. Read more and pre-order on my website, https://www.kendraelisabethmuecke.com
If you had the opportunity to meet one band or artist who would you choose and why?
It would have to be the original remaining members of the Grateful Dead. They have impacted my life so much. Their songs, lyrics, and presence in the countercultural movement have informed much of who I am. Bobby Weir, Phil Lesh, Mickey Hart, and Bill Kreutzmann. God speed.
How do you feel the independent music scene is evolving and do you like where it’s headed?
The independent music scene has a steady pulse that strengthens each day. It is very cool with the golden age of the internet to be able to be an indie artist who can reach listeners everywhere in the world. I could be singing to someone in their kitchen in Ireland because they read an article about me online or found my profile on Instagram. I also appreciate platforms like Spotify and Bandcamp that have allowed a way for me to monetize my music while also remaining true to my where I am in my career. There is a growing network of indie artists who I have gotten to know locally in LA and internationally on the internet. We work together and support each other. That being said, I think record deals are cool.
We all have “aha” moments that help us continue on our journey. What have been your “aha” moments in the music industry?
Oh, I had a big “aha” moment while driving the other day. There is the testament of fate and destiny that interplay in our lives, but ultimately, there is decision. There is strong-willed choice, and that we have power over. I choose each day what my actions are, what my thought-dwellings are, and how I move in the direction of my calling. When I decide what it is I want, it is my steadfast doing that accomplishes success in that realm. The type of good-breaks and success I receive are rewards from the universe for doing what I set out to do well. Decide, outline, act with a grateful heart, say thanks.
What does 2020 have in store for you?
2020 Vision has lots of writing, recording, and good breaks in it. I am currently working on a novel that really has some legs to it. It is a novel-memoir of my life thus far. Additionally, there will be the release of my second and third album, the growth of my audience and listeners, the sharpening of my guitar playing skills, the booking of more gigs, and the meeting of more like-minded individuals. As I mentioned in my previous answer, I have decided I want success in the music industry. I will accomplish this by all means necessary, and that path, I thankfully lead up to the eye in the sky. I do the actions in my realm and let destiny work in its. Thanks for having me today.