20 Questions: Buddy Nielsen of Senses Fail

20 Questions: Buddy Nielsen of Senses Fail

MusicSeptember 02, 2014

Going through phases in life is perfectly natural. It’s growth. Growth is good. For James “Buddy” Nielsen of the hybrid punk/post-hardcore act Senses Fail, his return to earlier work was the catalyst for the ongoing tour. He and his band perform the decade-old album “Let It Enfold You” in its entirety at The Summit Music Hall Sept 10 and we wouldn’t dare let the show go on without getting him in on our 20 Questions series. So without any more wasteful ado:

1. Thanks for taking your time out for us. Are you well? Can we get you anything?

I am well, thanks for asking.

2. The “Let It Enfold You” Tour is exactly that, you’ll be playing your iconic album from front to back – be honest, did you have to go back and relearn the songs?

Yes, absolutely. There are a couple songs we have never played live or haven't played in almost ten years.

3. Are we going to be hearing songs off of other albums in Denver, or just “Let It Enfold You?” We’re anxious.

Yes, there will be a mix of everything.

4. Give us a two line lyrical stanza using the words “blasphemy” and “canopy”

It is blasphemy to walk this earth, without wandering out from under your canopy of safety.

5. Is punk really dead?

I am not sure, it might be, depends on who you ask.

6. What kind of a crowd do you see at your shows nowadays? Old, young, hardcore, square?

I think we see a little bit of everyone, old and young, big and small, straight and gay. I welcome everyone.

7. Is anyone in the band on the no gluten thing, or have any other strange dietary habits?

Our guitar player had a very serious stomach illness this year and he has a very special diet because he almost died.

8. Do the lyrics that you wrote ten years ago still resonate with you personally or have you grown out of them?

Yes and no. I don't think I grew out of them but I think I grew from them. I almost think a lot of my lyrics I grow into about a year or two after the record.

9. What’s the strangest inspiration you’ve found that you’ve wrote about?

I would say I pull from a very deep place that my conscious mind isn't aware of at times. I feel my creative output is sometimes far beyond what my physical awareness can understand.

10. Does anyone in the band have their Halloween costumes picked out yet?

Yes, I am going to be Billy Madison.

11. Are there any other hobbies in your life?

Currently, it is meditation.

12. In a few words or less describe the music industry as you see it:

Really depends on where you are looking from. For me it is just my life. It changes and moves and evolves just like everything else. I exist in it in many different ways, as a musician, a manager, a label person, a fan. It is hard to pin down, for me it is my community.

13. How does someone take care of their throat before or after a show with such powerful vocals?

No speaking, no drinking, no caffeine and lots of sleep.

14. Do you remember what show you would consider as the band’s worst?

We played a really bad show with Saves The Day at the 9:30 club in DC.

15. Is there really a proper way to install a new toilet paper roll?

No, whatever way works for you.

16. Is there a living celebrity that you’d like to see be the next president?

Weird Al.

17. What are the bands that frequent your playlist, or who we should be listening to?

Harms Way, Gojira, Russian Circles, Joyce Manor, Major League, Somos, Sorority Noise and So Many Ways.

18. Let’s talk houseplants, do you own any and if so how well are they maintained?

Yes, I have about 5 and a bunch of succulents. They are alive and well.

19. Do you see yourself at 50 doing this same thing? Would you like to be?

I would like to be doing whatever it is feels the most relevant to me at that age. It might be music, it might be something else. I will know when I get there. But my intention is to continue to be create and find more ways I can interact and be of service to people and to become more aware and at ease with myself and my life.

20. What’s in store for the future of Senses Fail?

Tour, write, record, tour. Repeat.