When Neneh Cherry was rapping about hangin' in a "Buffalo Stance"... what the HELL was she talking about?!
The Notting Hill Gate area of London has long been a San Franciscoish melting pot of culture. As such, it was the perfect home for a new fashion phenomenon, embodied in 'Buffalo'.
Mixed together by stylist Ray Petri, Buffalo wasn't a place, or a company, or anything you can really put your finger on. It was an idea based around a random mix of designer gear, vintage clothes, raggamuffin, skateboard, and hip-hop culture. The resulting stew was celebrated in West London fashion magazines like Face, Arena and iD.
'People tend to associate the word Buffalo with Bob Marley's 'Buffalo Soldier',' Ray once explained, 'but in fact it's a Carribbean expression to describe people who are rude boys or rebels. Not necessarily tough, but hard style taken from the street... a functional and stylish look; non-fashion with a hard attitude.'
Neneh became friends with Petri, and in return Petri became a sort of fashion consultant. Neneh's debut single, Buffalo Stance celebrated Petri's vision. She appears in the video wearing biker shorts, a bomber jacket, and huge gold dollarsign medallions.
Looking good, hanging with the wild bunch
Looking good in a Buffalo Stance
Looking good when it comes to the crunch
Looking good's a state of mind
So, if you're standing around, looking tough but stylish in a gritty counter-culture kind of way, then you're probably in a Buffalo Stance.
Cherry 2000. by Sylvia Patterson