NewTracks New Artist: Matty Buxton

NewTracks New Artist: Matty Buxton

Bay Of Plenty musician Matty Buxton is one of those handy types to available being a guitarist who is competent on a range of other instruments, and can also pen a handy tune. Keen to progress in music as a profession and frustrated with being in bands not as motivated he has set out on his own path. Guessing Games is featured on NZ On Air Music‘s NewTracks compilation this February!

What’s your name, where are you from and what instruments do you play?

My name’s Matthew Buxton, born and raised here in the sunny Bay of Plenty. I play guitar, bass, and sing mostly but enjoy a totu with any type of instrument I can get my hands on.

Was any high school or other music training especially important to you?

I didn’t study music in high school and actually stopped playing music altogether until my early 20s when I went to Toi Ohomai to study music. That was where I met a few of the pivotal faces that have encouraged me to keep playing and writing.

Any other musical projects we might know you from?

I have played guitar and bass in the background of a few up-and-coming bands such as Leighton Fairly, Wheriko, and with Regan Perry and the Evolutionaries, But no big projects or names… yet.

What’s the background of how your solo project came to be? 

I had always been writing and jamming in different bands and hoping the right one would stick, but it wasn’t until my producer Nathan Sowter saw me playing in a pub that the thought of being a solo act was an option. Since then we have worked on all my current tracks together, with some friends coming in at different stages to help build a great sound.

How has your music evolved from your beginnings in songwriting to now?

I used to write on an acoustic guitar, sing or rap lyrics from my phone to the first melody that came to mind – it was largely about telling the story. Now I tend to gravitate toward grooves first and find a vibe, then add the lyrics later. Also, now it is more collaborative, I work with Nathan and also bounce ideas off of friends throughout the writing process.

What made you decide to stick with your name as your artist id?

Simple, I couldn’t think of a cool stage name. I always had ideas for band names but never thought of a cool-sounding artist name. Then a wise man told me, ‘It really doesn’t matter, your sound will be what it is no matter what the name is,’ so I just ran with what my parents gave me.

Aside from this release, what’s been the big highlight to date?

Last year we played a show at Totara St in the Mount. That was such an epic show, the crowd were so hyped and the energy in the room felt so open and accepting. There’ve been a lot of cool shows and opportunities but that one I will always remember.

What makes Guessing Games stand out for you as a single?

The groove! I think there are lots of cool sonic moments in this song, but it’s the combination of bass line and playful songwriting that stands out to me.

What is the story behind Guessing Games?

This is the story of essentially the ‘walk of shame’. An idea that after a one-night stand someone would walk home feeling shameful for their frivolous actions. But what if you’re not shameful? What if you’re actually quite proud and hopeful about his potential new beginning? And then how do you go about letting this person know how you feel without breaking the social norms around being too eager or ‘desperate’?

What’s your favourite moment, musical or lyrical, of the single?

I don’t think I have a favourite moment, but one of my favourites is in the second verse, where the lyrics say, ‘days, hours, should I buy her flowers, I don’t wanna wait no more’. I feel like so many people have been in that place where every fibre of their being just wants to message someone, but all their friends and better judgement tell them to wait… but for how long, and why?

What would you like listeners to take away from this song?

I hope it encourages people to be more honest when in these types of encounters, Or at least gives them a little taste of that hopeful feeling again.

Who else is in your team?

At the moment it’s just me and my producer Nathan Sowter, plus a few respected friends who dip in from time to time. I am hoping to grow our team this year and find new friends with new skills they can add to our journey.

Are there any other musical endeavours you’re working on that we should keep an eye out for?

Absolutely! I have another single With You which will be coming out late March. It’s a super fun song all about the triumph of having someone who has your back as if it were their own. I’m also currently writing a bunch of new songs, some of which we hope to have ready by summer 23/24. keep your eyes peeled.

Can you please name three other local tunes that would fit well on a playlist alongside your song.

  • Troy Kingi: Shake That Skinny Ass
  • Casual Healing: Amble
  • Louis Baker/Kings: Overdrive

Have any previous NZOA applications not gained funding or been included on NewTracks? Got any advice for others?

Yeah, I’ve tried with all of my songs but only two made it onto NewTracks. I would advise others to just keep trying, you never know why you didn’t get picked, but just keep making good tunes and it will eventually!

Are there any musical blogs, Youtube channels or podcasts you’re super into?

Yeah, I love ‘Hip hop saved my life’ by Romesh Ranganathan, I also have just got into ‘Dissect’ by Cole Cuchna.

Final words?

Thank you for this opportunity. I hope you like the song, please share it with your friends & family, but most importantly look out for each other and do something nice for someone today 🙂