With a smooth rock n’ roll sound and real-life lyrics, Bonfire Orchestra’s tunes will find their way into your summer playlist. Michael Thomas (lead singer, principal songwriter, and guitar player), Seth Parker (bass player), and Dayton Cooper (drummer) is a dynamic group who is dominating every stage on which they play.
Originally starting out as a duo, Bonfire Orchestra consisted of Michael Thomas and Dayton Cooper playing at small venues. “When we began to play bigger concerts and bigger stages, we brought on Seth Parker to play bass,” states Thomas. “Michael and I met—and that was the start of Bonfire Orchestra…Slowly over time—piece by piece—everything has developed and fallen into place,” says Dayton Cooper.
What did y’all do before the start of Bonfire Orchestra?
Dayton: “I was in another band and before that I was in another band–I have been in a band since I was 11 years old.”
Me: “Wow! That’s impressive!”
Dayton: “Yeah, it’s pretty nice. I love it.”
What inspired y’all to start Bonfire Orchestra?
Dayton: “Michael and I met–and that was the start of Bonfire Orchestra.”
Michael: “After that, we started playing bigger stages so we brought on this hobo (jokingly pointing at Seth Parker) to play bass.”
Dayton: “Slowly over time–piece by piece–everything has developed and fallen into place.”
How long has the band been together?
Michael: “Three years, now.”
Dayton: “Woah! Really? It feels way longer than that!”
Michael: “Dayton and I originally played as a two-piece for around 18 months or so–we played small stages and gigs. When we moved on to playing larger stages, we brought on our bass player Seth. He’s awesome.”
Seth: *grins with a full mouth and gives a thumbs-up*
Dayton: “Yeah, he is pretty great.”
What inspires y’all’s music?
Dayton: “Past experiences.”
Michael: “Yeah, I was going to say that. Horrendously tragic relationships with women haha”
Dayton: “Yeah, that’s a good one too. Really, all I can say is life. Everyday, we do new things, and we take inspiration from those things.”
Dayton: “Hey buddy, can I have some of your salmon?”
Seth: “Sure, man.”
Dayton: *with a full mouth* “Man, that’s some good salmon.”
Seth: *with a full mouth nods head in agreement*
Dayton: “This is the best interview ever, by the way!”
Me: “Yeah! I like this–it is fun!”
Dayton: “You want some pork tenderloin?”
Me: “No, I’m good–I’ll pass on that haha”
Seth: *reaches with his fork…takes a piece of pork tenderloin from Dayton’s plate…he tries the pork tenderloin* “That’s some good pork tenderloin!”
Where is y’all’s next stop on the tour?
Michael: “Jackson, Mississippi.”
Me: “What’s after Jackson?”
Michael: “I don’t remember haha”
Me: “Yeah, you just got to wing it haha”
Michael: “We were supposed to have five shows this week, but we flipped our van off the side of a ravine a few days ago.”
*Note: No musicians were harmed. Only an upright bass.”
Dayton: “Yeah, it was just a minor set back haha”
Michael: “So, we have a lighter week–just three shows this week.”
Me: “Well, I am so glad y’all got to come here! It has been such a fun interview.”
Michael: “We didn’t think we were going to make it, but then I was like…Abby is waiting on us–so, we pressed on!”
Dayton: “That should be a shirt–‘Don’t Leave Abby Hanging'”
How many shows do y’all do a year?
Michael: “Overall, we do about 180 shows a year–it is a pretty full-time gig.”
Do y’all travel regionally, locally, just in the South?
Michael: “The Southeast, mostly. It’s not that we won’t travel outside of that–but we usually travel within a 400/500 mile range.”
*pause in the interview as everyone takes a bite of food*
Michael: “You want some gator bites?”
Dayton: “We got pork tenderloin, fries, gator bites, pickle-o’s.”
Me: No, haha I’m okay. I ate before I came here haha”
Dayton: “Seth, why don’t you say something?”
Seth: “Why don’t I say something?
Dayton: “His plate is completely gone!”
Me: “Happy plate!”
Seth: “It is a happy plate.”
Where can people connect and find y’all?
Michael: “Yeah, come out and see us. We’d greatly appreciate it!”
The Bonfire Orchestra is totally the soundtrack of my summer! Meet the band on my latest YouTube video here.
So, kick off your shoes, grab a cold beverage, and lounge by the pool or get up and dance the day and night away to the catchy tunes of Bonfire Orchestra. Their album “The Well and the Water” (available on iTunes and Amazon) is the soundtrack of my summer pool parties! See what all the rage is about–purchase their album today!
The Bonfire Orchestra is such a terrific group of guys with super fun personalities! Words cannot express how much I love their music–and hearing them live at 12 Bar was beyond amazing! Keep up with them on Facebook and Twitter to see where they will be performing next! You will not want to miss Bonfire Orchestra when they come to your town!