Sofa King Addicted: Keeping ska and punk alive and in your face
Coming off a successful night headlining at the Toucan last week, Sofa King Addicted are riding the high and channeling their energy for two big upcoming shows – and they plan to deliver.
This coming Sunday (August 19, 2018), Sofa King Addicted, or S.K.A., the acronym the band intentionally created, will be playing Mackinnon Brothers Brewing’s Back to the Farm beer and music festival – one of the area’s most beloved summer festivals – and shortly thereafter, the boys of SKA will play the 4 a.m. Last Call Ska-Punk Showcase at the legendary Horseshoe Tavern in Toronto.
For a band that’s been plugging away and playing as hard as they can for 16 years, it’s a great way to end the summer. We caught up with S.K.A. to find out more about the band we all see listed on posters and filling local bars with their full, loud, and entertaining sets in and around Kingston.
Sofa King Addicted formed in Napanee in the early 2000s. While members of the band have come and gone over the years, founder Nathan Amey (AKA ‘Master Nate) has maintained the band’s original mandate throughout their existence.
“Sofa King Addicted began with a desire to create a ska band that was equally (or more) intense than any Punk band goin’,” Amey said, explaining that the band was intentionally named so that it would acronym to ‘S.K.A.’
“For ‘Sofa King,’ we paid homage to the band Diesel Boy by stealing from their album ‘Sofa King Cool.’ We then tacked on ‘Addicted’ for the ‘A’, as we needed an adjective… And hey, let’s face it: It fits this band,” Amey continued.
“We’re all addicted to the music and this lifestyle and, in some cases, other stuff too. We live up to our name!”
And, while members have come and gone, the band has done its best to maintain good relationships with past members, who remain a part of the ‘Sofa King Family,’ Amey explained.
“Former drummer Scott Marshall is an excellent example of this. Scott now resides in Gainesville, Florida and he also serves as our U.S. Representative,” he said.
“In fact, Scott was instrumental in facilitating Less Than Jake’s bassist/vocalist [Roger Lima] mastering our latest album in his personal studio in Gainesville (Moathouse Productions).”
Aside from Amey, the band consists of Adam Bagyan (AKA ‘Adamantium’ or ‘Ad Nauseam,’ depending on which band member you ask) on vocals, Dann Bertrand (AKA ‘Danny Addicted’) on bass, and Tony Gerhardt on drums. Gerhardt is the most recent addition to the band, who said “Playing with these crazy dudes is a great experience.”
“To be honest, this opportunity just fell into my lap really. I had been looking for a new band to be a part of and my buddy Dann from S.K.A. contacted me and hooked me up almost the same day I asked,” Gerhardt said of joining the band.
“I’ve seen the Sofa King Addicted name around a lot in Kingston so actually getting to be a member of this energetic band is really awesome.”
Indeed, energetic is a word that must be used when describing Sofa King Addicted. Their shows are exciting and full of banter between songs – banter that’s enhanced by the fact Amey and Bagyan have known one another since they were in grade four – and can go from fun and bouncy to borderline dangerous (so much so that “even the cops follow Sofa King Addicted as they have either been called to, in attendance at, or shut down 10+ Sofa King Addicted shows,” according to MusicFly.ca).
So what’s kept them pushing the envelope and playing their hardest all these years?
“Passion is what has kept us at this gritty lifestyle of making music. Not for money, not for fame. If there’s something missing in this world, it’s our duty to give it to the world,” Amey said.
“In our case there’s something missing from today’s music, especially in the mainstream… Therefore, it’s our duty to bring forth this music. Just as water must flow to the lowest lying area… we must dig this music from the trenches, the subterranean, and give it to the world above.”
And if you haven’t had the chance to check SKA out live, Back to the Farm will be a great place to do so.
“It really is a great event. It’s exciting just attending it and we couldn’t be more excited to play… to have our name up there on the poster next to some great musicians,” said Bertrand.
“To people who haven’t seen us, I would tell them that they are missing out on a good time and a great live performance. People should come out to a Sofa King Addicted show because, simply put: you won’t regret it!” Amey continued.
“In a life full of regrets, a Sofa King Addicted show is a chance to go out for a night and forget about your problems for a little while. You’ll tap your toe, you’ll sing, you’ll dance… you’ll have a good time if you just take this chance!”
To find out more about Sofa King Addicted, check them out on Facebook here, or at MusicFly.ca here. Check out their sound on Spotify here, or on iTunes here.