Kero Kero Bonito is the name of a pop and dance rock band with its origins traced to London, United Kingdom. The three-man band is made up of friends Gus Lobban & Jamie Bulled who are both music producers and multi-instrumentalists. The other member of the band, who is also the lead vocalist, is Japanese-English singer Sarah Bonito. Kero Kero Bonito began making music as a band in 2011 and has enjoyed a steady rise, gaining more relevance in the mainstream as the years rolled by. The band was part of those selected to perform at Coachella 2019. We take a look at the band’s formation, their exploits, as well as some other worth-knowing facts.
Kero Kero Bonito – Biography
Kero Kero Bonito is the brainchild of Gus Lobban and Jamie Bulled, two friends born in November 1992 in London and raised in the suburbs. They attended school together and their music passion brought them together as friends. Both instrumentalists and sound engineers, the two began making music together and knew right from school that all they wanted to do was music.
In search of a vocalist with Japanese roots, Lobban and Bulled took to MixB to search for someone and that someone would turn out to be Sarah Midori Perry. Perry was born in Japan on March 4th, 1991 but spent 13 years in her hometown Hokkaido, Japan before her parents relocated to the UK. She’d been frequenting the MixB platform since 2012 and it became a useful tool in helping her adapt quickly to the English culture.
The time that Lobban and Bulled put out their search for a vocalist on MixB coincided with a time in Perry’s life when she was in search of something more. She had been in her final year at the Kingston University London where she was studying for a BA in Fine Arts. Sarah was among the first responders to the advert and Loban and Bulled immediately loved her.
Perry’s early experience in professional music as part of a girl group was very useful to Lobban and Bulled who had none. By August 2014, Kero Kero Bonito had released their debut mixtape Intro Bonito under Double Denim Records. A month later, in September 2014, they made contributions to “shh#ffb6c1” the EP released by Canadian DJ, Ryan Hemsworth.
About a year after releasing their first record, Kero Kero Bonito embarked on their first American tour in August 2015. After garnering the much-needed traction, the band, in October 2016, released their debut studio album Bonito Generation to much success.
Kero Kero Bonito is known for incorporating video game melodies into their music. They had a busy 2018, releasing their second album, Time ‘n’ Place and their third EP, TOTEP.
The members of the Kero Kero Bonito have been very tight-lipped regarding details about their families. For Lobban and Bulled, nothing else is known publicly about them asides the fact that they grew up in the London suburbs. For Sarah Perry who is best known by her stage name Sarah Bonito, her Japanese root is perhaps the only information publicly known about her heritage.
Facts About The Musicians
• Kero Kero Bonito intentionally made their stage name ambiguous. The name relates to many things including the onomatopoeic words for frog croaks, the Brazilian quero-quero bird, a type of fish, as well as the Portuguese translation of “I want, I want, Beautiful”.
• Sarah Bonito played the saxophone during junior high for her school jazz band.
• Sarah, in 2019, started a different career as a DJ. She DJs under the moniker DJ Cryalot.
• In addition to music, Sarah Bonito is very passionate about arts which is one of the reasons why Gus Lobban & Jamie Bulled chose her to be their vocalist. Some of her works on visual arts can be found scattered over her social media pages.
• Both Bonito Gus Lobban & Jamie Bulled have side music projects asides from Kero Kero Bonito. Lobban releases his own music under the name Kane West while Bulled, a former member of the band Kabogaeries, records his own music via the moniker Wharfwhit.
• During live performances, Kero Kero Bonito include Jennifer Walton on the drums and James Rowland on the guitar.
• Their album Time ‘n’ Place was inspired by the events in their private lives including the demolition of Sarah’s childhood home in Japan.