Interview by Gabe
For years the band Monkey have been bringing they're high energy ska and reggae to the Bay area and the rest of the globe. Performing over 200 hundred shows a year they are definitely the hardest working band on the west coast. Fortunately, singer/guitarist Curtis Meacham was able to take some time out of his busy schedule to answer some of our questions.
Monkey has been around for quite some time. How would you describe the band now in comparison to when you first started?
Curtis: MONKEY is going stronger than ever! We've gone from local legends to conquering the world with tours to Mexico, Canada & Europe. Things are definitely moving quickly, now.
What are you guys up to right now?
Curtis: Currently, we have recorded 2 albums worth of music and we're finishing up the editing and mix-down sessions.
Each album you have put out seems to have its own distinct sound. Can we expect the same of this new album you're recording? What else can you tell us about it?
Curtis: Absolutley! The next 2 MONKEY releases are chock-full of deep Reggae Roots and Ska magic. This may be the best project we've worked on, yet.
What was it like touring the UK and US with Bad Manners?
Curtis: Touring the UK was excellent. The crowds really love the music and Ska has been part of the pop culture since the '60's. We got to meet some of the Bad Manners contingent in the UK, but we didn't tour with them until they came to the U.S.
The Bad Manners tour was very rough, but it was a very good learning experience, playing as MONKEY, and then as the Bad Manners back up band, every night.
Are there any other bands you've supported that really stand out to you? Any stories you would like to share?
Curtis: Most "headliner" bigwig groups that we've played with, say "oh, Your band was great," but they were actually having dinner during your set... However, Fishbone was not at all like that. When we were the opening act, Angelo was the first body on the floor, jumping up and down and screamin' "Damn, you boys can play the ol' skool!" He makes the whole thing worth while, that Angelo!
You guys are known for doing a ton of shows every year. How do 6 guys keep up with such a busy schedule? Don't you have jobs?
Curtis: We all have jobs, unfortunately. Just jobs that understand that sometimes we have to leave the workplace and rock out, every once in a while.
In addition to the new Monkey album, what else do you have planned this year?
Curtis: Well, this year, we're gonna try getting both albums out, then we are going to back it up with a "Return To European" tour. Maybe Japan, I hear we're big in Japan.
For more info on the band visit www.myspace.com/monkeyska