Cherie Bugtong (vocals) and Daisy Spencer (guitar) came up with their duo name after experiencing cases of mistaken identity. Now, as ConBoy they make acute, intelligent indie-pop, and although their live sets are still in their infancy, Bugtong has the assured confidence on stage of a star in waiting. Ahead of their debut single “I Don’t Get It” (out April 25th), we grabbed the duo for their first ever interview!
Where did the name ‘ConBoy’ come from?
Daisy: That’s my favourite thing to talk about personally. Cherie came up with ‘ConBoy’ out of nowhere and I thought it was awesome because ConBoy literally means you’re a con boy. We’re girls that are often mistaken for boys and I know so many queer girls and even straight girls who have short hair and get mistaken for boys all the time. We’re just trying to embrace that and have other people embrace it as well!
Can you talk about your influences for this album?
Cherie: LP was one of our first influences for the sound and recently we’ve also realized that we’re into a Weezer sort of vibe. What really matters to me though, in terms of ConBoy, is the words. I’m all for wordplay. I care a lot about what the message is in every song that we write so I love people like Regina Spektor that are really great wordsmiths.
This is a really transformative time in music. Do you think there’s pressure to be a certain type of person in this industry? How do you hope to use your voice?
Cherie: Well the best part about it for us is that there’s actually no pressure. [ConBoy] happened so naturally and we genuinely have fun making music together. It just clicked for us. Thinking of female artists today, and we say this a lot, they’re either really soft, dainty, pretty or sexy; or on the other end of the spectrum they’re super hard core or metal. There’s never an in between and I feel like we’re the perfect mix. We have fun and we can rock the fuck out. Which is exactly what we want for our fans when they come to our shows.
Daisy: We’re just making music that we would want to listen to if we went to a concert. We’ve gone to so many concerts together and we think, ‘what do we want to see?’ And we want to see a rock-out-show with two chicks going crazy on stage! We’ve got that and we’ve got an amazing drummer who’s really going to help bring everything together.
Can you talk more about how ConBoy came together?
Cherie: It’s funny because we didn’t even start out making music thinking it would become something. I started writing some chords down and Daisy was like “oh keep doing that” “keeping singing that” and from there we just made our own sound. One thing led to another and we ended up at an open mic night in Woodstock. Woodstock is where we started writing music together and right after that night we starting saying alright, this is gonna be a thing.
Daisy, you were previously in The Skins. What can long time fans expect from this new project?
Daisy: The Skins is an amazing band. I used to write a lot for The Skins and eventually passed over creative control to other members of the band – rightfully so, because we were dealing with a genre of music I didn’t necessarily have a lot of knowledge in at the time – which is straight up pop. I always wanted to make my own project and work with a great singer. Cherie came into my life and we started this whole endeavor and it really gave me a space where I could write exactly the type of music I wanted. I love rock music. That is my jam. When you go and see The Skins live, we give a rock show for sure! What I gave to The Skins was really in the live element. ConBoy is definitely more old school. It’s familiar sounding songs with a new age twist.
Do you have any plans to tour this summer?
Daisy: We hope that we can hop on a tour supporting someone like Angel Olsen or LP but if we can’t then we’re just going to do it ourselves. We don’t care if it’s us playing to five people every night. We really just want to start spreading the word nationwide. Everything is word of mouth when it comes to getting behind a band that you don’t necessarily know. We’re going to go for it!
Is there anyone you’d love to collaborate with in the future?
Cherie: When we get big and poppin’ I would love to work with Tove Lo. She’s so dope – she’s another big influence. We’re gritty. We’re bold. It would be a dope collaboration!
On their upcoming single “I Don’t Get It”:
Daisy: The song is about not really understanding today’s society and the whole digital wave and what it’s all about. So Cherie came up with the concept that we would have my own grandmother and her friends – and they’re partiers –
Cherie: – these women are goals basically –
Daisy: – We’re going to have younger people portrayed by my grandma and her girl-gang of friends. It’s going to be a weird switch of of their younger selves vs. their older selves.
Cherie: It’s uplifting because the song is telling you it’s ok that things are changing. Everybody else is changing but you don’t have to change. You can be yourself. You can embrace that. It going to be fun and honest. I think that’s a beautiful thing.
Get a first look at ‘I Don’t Get It’ on ConBoy’s Instagram: