First/Last-The Last Bison

September 13, 2012

Photo courtesy of the band

“The Last Bison’s mountain-top chamber music combines elements of alternative indie-folk with classical sensibilities, bringing a fresh inspiring sound to the folk genre. The music of this seven member band grew organically in the family living room and around backyard bonfires giving it a rootsy quality and yet the complex arrangements and refined strings seem just as appropriate in the symphony hall. With recent airplay on WROX (Norfolk, VA), the popularity of the band is expanding rapidly. According to the stations program manager, “Switzerland”, the first single from their Debut album has prompted the biggest audience response of any tune in his five years at the station.”

Check out the band at their official Website, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Vimeo, BandCamp and MySpace. The band hits Pittsburgh on their current tour Saturday opening up for Kishi Bashi at The Shadow Lounge. My thanks to singer-songwriter Benjamin Hardesty for taking the time to particpate in this edition of First/Last.

  • The first album you ever bought?
  • It was either U2’s “War” or Elton John’s “Greatest Hits”, both of which had a profound impact on me in terms of appreciating powerful and passionate lyric and melody.
  • Your last album bought?
  • I think it was a recent purchase of Neil Young’s “Harvest Moon” on vinyl.
  • Favorite album of all time?
  • I love “October” by U2. It captures so much of the raw passion and chemistry of the band, and has a profound spiritual and poetic lyric that I love.
  • Least favorite/most disappointing album?
  • I won’t answer any least favorite album, shows or artist ?s. I just don’t want to be sharing negative criticism or degrading comments about other artists.
  • First concert attended?
  • I saw MuteMath at the NorVa in Norfolk, VA when I was around 14 and remember being in awe of the energy on stage.
  • Last concert?
  • Aesop Rock while we were backing Kishi Bashi at the FYF Fest in LA.
  • Favorite concert ever?
  • Hmm, Wolf Mother in Manchester, England at the Academy, or Sufjan’s ‘Age Of Adz’ tour at The National in Richmond, VA.
  • Any thoughts, experiences about Pittsburgh?
  • I am a Steelers fan! Actually my father lived in Pittsburgh (Upper St. Clair) when he was a kid.

Thanks, Ben. You could be the smartest man in music by mentioning The Steelers in your answers. That alone just might pack the Shadow Lounge on Saturday!