Santa Cruz Good Times

Tuesday
Jul 28th
Text size
  • Increase font size
  • Default font size
  • Decrease font size

Gotta Have That Funk

eventi SophistafunkSophistafunk is an ambassador of energy

When it comes to performing, Sophistafunk is all about energy. And according to Adam Gold, who plays keys and bass for the band, the audience is partially responsible for what the trio ends up creating on stage each night.

“I would almost say they’re like a fourth musician, a silent partner in all of this,” explains Gold. “The three of us know what we’re going to do, but we’re leaving this fourth space open which is sort of our muse.”

With respect to the band’s MC, Jack Brown, Gold says the crowd’s response has an almost cinematic effect on his performance.

“Do you remember the old movie Highlander?” asks Gold. “It’s like each crowd we play for juices [Brown] up even more. He’s like the Highlander. He’s getting more confident and is able to bring more to the take with each new show, which is exciting. To see someone go from writing poems in a notebook to grabbing the mic in front of 5,000 people at a music festival, that’s a huge progression.”

The Syracuse, N.Y.-based band’s new EP, Freedom Is, is a diverse, hip-shaking, lyrically potent experience. The title track brings the funk, the whole funk, and nothing but the funk; “Sex, Drugs, Rock & Roll” is a veritable dance party; and the molasses-thick bass lines of “Bruce Lee” will make hip-hop fans swoon.

But “Gotta Walk” is the standout. This hypnotic fusion of funk, hip-hop, rap and old-school Nintendo-style synths and sound effects is the epitome of infectious, right down to the song’s uplifting content—one of the band’s hallmarks.

“It’s very intentional,” Gold says of Brown’s penchant for writing positive lyrics. “From day one, he’s been very positive, thought-provoking and progressive with his content.”

Sophistafunk, which is rounded out by drummer Emanuel Washington, is a positivity-creating machine. Socially conscious material abounds in songs like “Gotta Walk” and the title track, both of which touch on the issue of becoming a prisoner to the expectations of the world.

The band is not all talk, either.

“One of the ways we stay sane is that on any given night we’re able to adjust and attribute the performance to what we’re feeling like that day,” says Gold. “What’s ironic though is, say we have a big fight in the van earlier in the day and it leaves a lot of negative energy, that doesn’t turn out to be a negative performance later that night; it actually makes it better. We won’t be talking to each other, but now we’re on stage in front of 50 people and we’re going to work, so we’re able to express all this built-up energy in a positive way. I am always amazed by that.”

While the band has been making music together for seven years, Gold says they are always finding new ways to invigorate themselves creatively, and are really starting to hit their stride. Freedom Is is the band’s third release, and according to Gold, it is the first time they’ve been able to record an album that sounds the same as when they play live.

“Our goal was to produce an album that really reflects the live performance in a way that ... when you listen to the CD you can imagine you are at a live show,” says Gold. “If you turn up your stereo nice and loud, you should be able to imagine yourself at one of our concerts!” 


Sophistafunk will perform at 8:30 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 15 at Moe’s Alley, 1535 Commercial Way, Santa Cruz. Tickets are $9/adv, $12/door. For more information, call 479-1854.

Comments (0)Add Comment

Write comment
smaller | bigger

busy
 

Share this on your social networks

Bookmark and Share

Share this

Bookmark and Share

 

The Binding of Edmund McMillen

How a Santa Cruz designer created one of the most unlikely hits in video game history

 

Sun in Leo, Rosy Star, Venus and Uranus Retrograde

Three major celestial events occur this week. Wednesday, the Sun enters Leo, highlighting the heart center of everyone. Leo is a sign of deep sensitivity (along with Cancer). Wednesday is also the feast day of St. Mary Magdalene, one of the most misunderstood women in the Bible. Saturday, July 25, Venus turns stationary retrograde at 0 Virgo (progressed Regulus, the Law, Hall of Records). Venus retrogrades for 44 days and nights, forming one petal of a five-pointed rosy star (pentagram) in the sky (five retrogrades over eight years = star). Venus retrograde turns values upside down. Our usual sense of beauty, values, the real price of things, relationships—all turn into a bundle of confusion. We don’t seem to know anything. Luxury goods are mispriced, values are jumbled, we wonder who that person is we’re in relationship with. We don’t know where our money is or where it’s gone. Venus, in daily life, represents values (resources, money, possessions and quality of relationships). Venus retrograde asks, “What do I value?” Venus retrograde puts us in touch with what has changed and what is truly of value in our lives. Venus retrogrades from 0 Virgo to 14 degrees Leo (July 25-Sept. 6). Leo is about the self and our creativity, which is how we come to know and value ourselves. We “know ourselves through what we create.” In Venus (values) retrograde (inner focus) we will ask, “What are values (not just money and finances)? What are my values? What do I create? How do I value my creations? Do I value myself?” Sunday, Uranus—planet of all things new, revelatory and revolutionary—also retrogrades (from 20 to 16 degrees Aries) until the full moon of Christmas Day. Five months of Uranus retrograde. In July and continuing on through the following months we have many planets retrograding. Things therefore slow down. Everyone’s focus becomes subjective, hidden by veils and curtains. A time when inner reserves of strength are available. A time of protection.

 

The New Tech Nexus

Community leaders in science and technology unite to form web-based networking program

 

Film, Times & Events: Week of July 24

Santa Cruz area movie theaters >
Sign up for Good Times weekly newsletter
Get the latest news, events

RSS Feed Burner

 Subscribe in a reader

Latest Comments

 

AJ’s Market

Local cult fave keeps getting bigger and better

 

What do you think of Bernie Sanders?

He’s what we need, more hardcore Democrats. Old-school, ’70s-style Democrats. Tony Dolan, Santa Cruz, Freelancer

 

Hunter Hill Vineyards & Winery

Calling all Merlot lovers—Hunter Hill has released its 2013 estate Merlot ($25)—and a superb one it is, too.

 

Turn Up the Beet

Golden beets with buffalo mozzarella, plus single-malt whiskies and award-winning local Chardonnays