The Brooklyn community is heartbroken over the sudden death of local musician, beloved bartender and friend, Christo Buffam. Christo was found dead in his apartment on early Thursday morning; there has been no public cause of his death reported. His facebook page is flooded with heartfelt comments, songs he enjoyed with friends and memories from friends and bandmates of their time with him. A Memorial Gathering will be held today, March 31 at 8pm @ Cheap Storage, 49 Wyckoff
Originally from Connecticut, Christo found his way to Boston and constantly coming back and forth to Brooklyn. Even before he moved here in 2009, Christo spent a large amount of his time in Bushwick and Williamsburg. He played guitar in shoegaze band The Vandelles for several years, whose single “Swell to Heaven” we featured last year, and was also a member of Dead Leaf Echo, Bloody Knives and other local bands. Friends involved in the music scene were struck by his true love for listening to and playing music, his passion and his talent.
Christo Buffam, guitarist on the left. Photo courtesy of The Vandelles.Friend and former bandmate, Jason Schwartz, explained his love for Christo:
“Something Christo taught me was the difference between being a part of the community because you wanna get somewhere verses being a part of a community because you love the people and the idea of creating a special connection. He loved the people here and just being a part of it. He didn’t have to make an effort, he was the scene, he just embodied the connection that we all have based on a love of dark rock and roll music.”
Even those who only were casual acquaintances of Christo’s have fond memories. Elliott Frazier of Ringo Deathstarr recalled, “He always made my time in New York awesome…by letting me crash on his couch, giving us a ride to the airport, and finding us places to practice if we were learning new songs.”
Long time friend from Boston, Jinsen Liu of 28 Degrees Taurus, met Christo in 2007. In speaking of Christo, Liu said, “He was always in an interesting musical project and was always about the scene and community first; always super supportive and caring… he’ll be missed.”
Christo’s connection with the musicians he knew was something that bonded them for life. Memories of his nature come from a place of true love and complete devastation over the loss of a great human being whose love of music was truly visible to all. Christo was a man of many talents, passions, and no lack of friends and supporters. In addition to playing music and DJing on his own and at local bar Alaska during his shifts, Christo had a love for screen printing, and was an active artist, and also enjoyed cooking elaborate, delicious meals. In fact, He would have soon been featured on Bushwick Daily for an interview, but unfortunately, that was not able to happen.
Lg Galleon of Dead Lead Echo spoke of his friendship with Christo:
“Christo was one of my closest friends, my best friend for three years and the one one thing I could always rely on him for was his brutal honesty. Simple and direct he made things easier by putting up no walls or pretense. He alone got me into silkscreen printing which I still do to this day. I had never even considered it’s worth before him and he made some beautiful prints to this day I still treasure.”
Whether they were close, or only met a few times, Christo touched so many people with his kindness, his passion and his silliness, and it is a shame to lose someone so genuine.
“He would always be going to every show. He was that person who was in the center of everything without trying to be that person and that’s why he was. Genuine is the best word to describe him I think,” remarked Schwartz.
As a journalist I’m meant to keep my own feelings out of reporting, but as a friend and former roommate of Christo Buffam, it’s hard not to add that he was truly a wonderful person. His attitude, his kindness, his support of friends’ music and his goofy antics — leaving all his clothes at the laundromat at SXSW in order to see a Crocodile show with his bandmates and then lamenting over his lost clothes the next day [shared by Jason Schwartz]–will never be forgotten. Thoughts go out to Christo’s family and friends. His death is truly a tremendous loss.
Below is a video submitted by Deaf Leaf Echo of the song, “Birth.”
The Vandelles-“Miles Away.” Christo sang vocals on this song.
**A Memorial Gathering will be held tonight, March 31 at 8pm @ Cheap Storage, 49 Wyckoff.**
Ian Buffam Posted on facebook today:
“On behalf of the Buffam family we want to thank you all for sharing your thoughts and memories of Christo. It is great to know that he touched so many of you in great ways, and will always be remembered with a smile. We are going to be gathering to remember Christo’s life tomorrow evening at 8:00pm at Cheap Storage on 49 Wyckoff Avenue in Brooklyn. Music will be played and his artwork displayed. Bring a drink that you know Christo would approve of.”
For more information, please contact Jason Schwartz at [email protected]