Santa Cruz Good Times

Wednesday
May 27th
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 New Tech Nexus

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

 

Off Her Meds

Kristin Wiig runs wild—and transcends her sketch comedy roots—as a truly strange character ‘Welcome to Me’

 

Gate Openers

Up-and-coming artists like Ryan Bingham are a great reason to show up early to the Santa Cruz American Music Festival

 

Gemini Sun, Pentecost, Shavuot—Enlightenment and Gladness

As the sun enters Gemini on Sunday, sign of speaking, communication, thinking, inter-relations, writing and understanding languages, the feast days of Pentecost & Shavuot (Catholic and Jewish festivals) occur. During Pentecost’s 50 days after Easter, tongues of fire appear above the heads of the disciples, providing them with the ability to understand all languages and all feelings hidden in the minds and hearts of humanity. It’s recorded that Pentecost began with a loud noise, which happened in an upper room (signifying the mind). The Christ (World Teacher) told his disciples (after his ascension) when encountering a man at a well carrying a water pot (signs for Age of Aquarius) to follow him to an upper room. There, the Holy Spirit (Ray 3 of Divine Intelligence) would overshadow them, expand their minds, give them courage and enable them to teach throughout the world, speaking all languages and thus able to minister to the true needs of a “seeking” humanity. Pentecost (50 days, pentagram, Ray 5, Venus, concrete and scientific knowledge, the Ray of Aquarius) sounds dramatic, impressive and scary: The loud noise, a thunderous rush of wind and then “tongues of fire” above the heads of each disciple (men and women). Fire has purpose. It purifies, disintegrates, purges, transforms and liberates (frees) us from the past. This was the Holy Spirit (Ray 3, love and wisdom) being received by the disciples, so they would teach in the world and inform humanity of the Messiah (Christ), who initiated the new age (Pisces) and gave humanity the new law (adding to the 10 Commandments of the Aries Age) to Love (Ray 2) one another. Note: Gemini is also Ray 2. Shavuot is the Jewish Festival of Gladness, the First Fruits Festival celebrating the giving of the 10 Commandments to Moses as the Aries Age was initiated. Thus, we have two developmental stages here, Jewish festival of the Old Testament. Pentecost of the New Testament. We have gladness, integrating both.
Sign up for Good Times weekly newsletter
Get the latest news, events

RSS Feed Burner

 Subscribe in a reader

Latest Comments

 

What’s your take on Santa Cruz locals?

Santa Cruz locals are really friendly once you know them. I think a lot of them have a hard time leaving, and I would too. Ryan Carle, Santa Cruz, Biologist

 

Soquel Vineyards

If Soquel Vineyards partners Peter and Paul Bargetto and Jon Morgan were walking down the street wearing their winning wine competition medals, you’d hear them coming from a mile away. This year was particularly rewarding for the Bargettos and Morgan—they won two Double Gold Medals and five Gold Medals at January’s San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition.

 

Flats Bistro

Pizza with an artisan twist comes to Aptos Beach

 

Should Pacific Avenue be a one-way street, two-way street, or pedestrian only?

I would definitely support closing off Pacific Mall to cars. I think that would be wonderful. Jim Grey, Santa Cruz, Builder