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The Suburbanite
  • Boston-based singer-songwriter Kristen Ford returns to Buzzbin

  • “People see a girl with an acoustic guitar and think, ‘Here comes an emotional song about heartbreak.' " That is so not her.

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  • A Boston-based singer-songwriter, Kristen Ford knows what you’re thinking.
    “People see a girl with an acoustic guitar and think, ‘Here comes an emotional song about heartbreak. And maybe she can play a little guitar, too,’ ” she said.
    That is so not her.
    “I want to blow people away and surprise them,” Ford said of her vibrant solo act, coming Saturday to downtown Canton’s Buzzbin Music Shop. “I want to be able to play just as good as any of the guys, if not better.”
    Wait, she’s just getting warmed up.
    “Mine’s not the type of show where you hear two songs and get the gist of what the show is going to be like,” she promised. “You like indie rock? I do that. Country? You’ll hear that. Reggae? I’ve got a couple of those. I want to be versatile and open to playing any type of music, from doo-wop to metal.”
    Ford has played twice previously at Buzzbin and sounded plenty stoked about returning. Here are highlights from our freewheeling phone conversation.
    Q. How did you wind up playing at Buzzbin the first time?
    A. “It was one of those random things. I was on a month-long tour last June and I wasn’t able to line anything up for a Friday or Saturday night between St. Louis and New York City, literally that wide of a range, and I was very upset. And Mike over at Buzzbin had a full lineup already but he said, ‘We’ll squeeze you in.’ I was really overwhelmed by what a cool place it was.”
    Q. And now you’re heading back for your third time.
    A. “All of us indie artists at the bottom-feeder level are playing the Buzzbin. I was hanging with a Chicago band in a parking lot in Indiana and one of them was wearing a Buzzbin T-shirt. It’s a small world.”
    Q. Can you give me a preview of your show?
    A. “I am going to be performing solo and doing everything in my power to make it superdynamic. I’ll have acoustic and electric guitars, my ukelele, harmonica, a looping pedal, my voice and a cajon, which is a box drum. I use a kick pedal to play it with my foot while I play guitar. That way I can still get people out there dancing and moving without having a drummer.”
    Q. How did you get started in music?
    A. “I started playing guitar when I was 14 and I pretty much immediately started writing songs. It was a outlet for me, very therapeutic. We did a lot of moving around when I was growing up. I think that was a little bit hard for me. But I’ve been playing guitar for 11 years now. Music is a constant part of my life. It’s helped me get through the hardest times and celebrate the best times.”
    Page 2 of 2 - Q. What musicians have influenced you?
    A. “Ani DiFranco. The first time I saw her, in the front row, I walked away from that show saying, ‘That’s what I want to do.’ I’ve been inspired by a lot of different artists over the years — Radiohead, Blink-182, Alanis Morrisette.”
    Q. Are your songs drawn from your life?
    A. “Living something inspires me. Love. Working. Being broke. Being in different parts of the country. People trying to get along. I often try to wrap a couple of different stories together in one song. I’ve found that the best songs are the ones that are the most vague. Then, the listeners can make it about them.”
    Q. You also have a band, right?
    A. “I have a five-piece band at home in Boston. Drums, lead guitar, violin and upright bass. We have four singers in the band, so it’s a pretty full sound. That’s what’s on the records as well.”
    Q. Is the indie-rock scene pretty much a boys’ club?
    A. “It’s a hipster club. I don’t know if it’s a boys’ club. More and more, there’s girls in the mix, playing everything — guitar, bass, drums. The kids coming up now are hungry and so good. It puts a fire under my (derriére).”
    Q. I like what I’ve heard of your music online.
    A. “Can you tell people they can download my music for free at www.kristenfordband.bandcamp.com? They can pay for it if they want, but I just want everybody to hear it and have at it.”
     

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