The Daily Rambling Artist: From Tears to Tenders - Communal Mourning with Buckethead

The Daily Rambling Artist: From Tears to Tenders - Communal Mourning with Buckethead

I am an individual that is easily amused. It’s a characteristic I embrace wholly, as the little things in life can often bring me the biggest joys. Sometimes, all it takes is a man putting a chicken bucket over his head and playing guitar, and I'm in. Even better when this actually happens. Enter Buckethead!

Buckethead, the enigmatic and eccentric guitarist, is a true icon, well, more of an underground icon. With his trademark white mask and a KFC bucket adorning his head, he undoubtedly stands out. When I discovered my first Buckethead record many moons ago, I couldn't help but have the same reaction that most people would - utter bewilderment mixed with intrigue. The internet was still in its early stages, and there was limited information available, allowing me to fill in the narratives with my own imagination.

A friend of mine mentioned that Buckethead had a brief stint in Guns N' Roses that didn't quite work out. The thought alone provoked laughter from deep within me. As a fan of surrealism, this scenario was undeniably surreal itself. And my fandom only grew stronger.

It was, however, a heartfelt tribute on Buckethead's webpage after the passing of ODB (Ol' Dirty Bastard) that truly solidified my admiration for him. Reading that he was a fan and deeply saddened by ODB's departure made me feel a sense of camaraderie. I too was devastated by the untimely exit of Dirt McGirt.

I played the tribute over and over, immersing myself in its repetitive melody. I remember my sister walking into my office and catching me staring at the screen with a tinge of sadness as the tribute played. Buckethead had become more than just a musician to me; he was a friend and a keeper.

Determined to share the experience, I scored tickets for my little brother and myself when I saw that Buckethead was in town, and I proudly declared, "We're going." My brother's presence was a gift to myself, knowing that he would be as mesmerized as I was. It was an incredible moment to witness a legend come to life before our very eyes.

The true climax of the concert occurred when Buckethead pulled out a Santa sack filled with presents and began distributing them to the crowd. Chaos ensued as fans eagerly sought the toys he was handing out. Amidst the pandemonium, my brother found himself caught up in the frenzy. I could hear his frustration growing more expressive as he would come close to receiving a gift only to be passed over, exclaiming, "Oh, come on!!" Finally, his moment arrived. If my memory serves me correctly, he ended up with some kind of My Little Pony toy.

In my book, the concert was an undeniable A+. Yet, Buckethead defies all grading systems. He exists in a universe entirely of his own. I can only strive to emulate his uniqueness, creativity, and ability to captivate audiences with his extraordinary musicality and unconventional persona. Buckethead is an enigma, and his artistry continues to inspire and challenge the boundaries of music, existence, and even KFC.

-Sergio Santos