Bambu Station: So Much Love

When Bambu Station was first writing the songs on One Day, Jalani Horton wanted a short introduction to “How I Feel.” Bassist Phil “Pix” Merchant  jumped on the keyboard. Within moments, he created a short and sweet vibe that perfectly introduced “How I Feel.”

That song, “Interlude,” included two short lines, repeated twice.

So much love forever

In such a short time with iyah

“How I Feel” evolved from Jalani’s chord fiddling. He considered himself a beginner musician at the time, one driven by intense feelings and an overwhelming desire to express his thoughts and emotions. All he knew was that he had something 

“I remember fiddling around on the keyboard and I started playing an Am chord and then a Dm chord,” Horton says. “The tone and emotional feel of these two chords together were really nice. After playing them for a while, I felt a vibe to sing something.”

So Horton hit the Am chord and the first lyrics gently erupted: “I always thought you were beautiful.” Next came the Dm chord, and immediately: “Even through teary eyes.” 

Once those lines were out, the band was off and running with another song, a gorgeous roots reggae track equally informed by the lover’s rock sound of the late seventies. “How I Feel” was written in stark contrast to the more “militant stuff” the band was focused on. Yet all members agreed it served as a nice balance to the harder tracks driven by political messages.

Politics matter, yet all humans need love, too.

Reflecting on the moment, Horton now feels this was a sign of emotional maturity, as a musician and human being. “Interlude” leading into “How I Feel” is about a pivotal personal moment in honor of a woman who had “big, soft, loving eyes and an amazing smile.”

“At this time in my life, I was learning to communicate more and be more mindful of others’ feelings” he says. “I recalled a time when this lady I knew was in tears. Looking back, she wasn’t saying what those moments were really about, and I wasn’t perceptive enough to know it was about the love she was feeling that couldn’t be reciprocated at the time.”

Thankfully, this is also a redemption story: 16 years after writing “How I Feel,” Horton sat at a hotel lobby piano and sang it to her. Healing and understanding are possible.

When thinking about the deluxe edition of One Day, Horton still had more to say. “How I Feel” captured his feelings about this woman, yet “Interlude” wouldn’t leave his mind. 

“I always wanted to give that track more breadth,” Horton says. “I wanted it to be a little longer,  so we made it a minute longer. We added horns from my brother Jah Bless. He really captured how I felt, and took the song to another level.”

That’s the beauty of music: it’s never over. Songs constantly evolve, reinterpreted to capture the sentiment of a new day. “Interlude” might have been dreamed up as a segue, but now fleshed out as “So Much Love,” the song takes on a life of its own. 

Perhaps in another 20 years the song will be reimagined again. Regardless, we have two beautiful versions to listen to now.

The 20th Anniversary Deluxe Edition Digital and Double LP Vinyl of Bambu Station’s “One Day” will be released on Old Growth Records on May 3, 2024. The special edition will include an extended version of “Interlude” that the band has titled “So Much Love.”

“So Much Love”

So much love forever

In such a short time with iyah

So much love forever

In such a short time with iyah

“How I Feel”

I always thought you were beautiful

Even through teary eyes

I always thought you were beautiful

Like the brightest star in the sky

I always thought you were beautiful

What a gorgeous smile

And I don’t, think you know how I feel

And I don’t, think you know how I feel

But that is okay, you have found happiness

You’ve found a good man

And your marriage is a success

And your son is your joy

Onto you, Jah has blessed

And you’ve found, peace and happiness

And you’ve found, good love and happiness

But that is okay, for to you, I could not offer

That type of life, for you American daughter

Said I must go back home,

To my simple life, surrounded by water

Cause I am, a simple man in my heart

Cause I am, a bushman in my heart

Just a look in my mind, it’s just a look in my heart

It’s just a look in my mind, just a look in my heart

Just a thought in my mind, just a vibes in my heart

Yea, ahhhh, ah, woooo, yeaaaaa

Look into my eyes, look into my eyes

Look into my eyes, and you will see in my mind

Look into my eyes, and you will see in my heart

Look into my eyes,

It’s just a vibe, just a vibes in my mind

Just a vibe, just a vibe, just a vibe in my heart

Yea, I want to let you know that I care for you!

Yes I love you!

Girl, I hope you love me too!

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