Todd, let’s start by talking about your group, Kung Fu, and the Catskill Chill Music Festival (Sept 7-9) in Hancock, NY.
Q1: When did Kung Fu first originate? How does the name Kung Fu relate to you guys as a band?
Kung Fu germinated during the autumn glow of 2010, originally intended as a Monday-night improvisational project at a brand new venue in New Haven, CT. The name Kung Fu literally means striving to achieve the highest level of one’s craft, or art. That is the collective intent of our project.
Q2: After performing separately in other bands and music projects, how did you come together to form Kung Fu?
Todd had known Tim and Adrian for years, having toured together with their separate projects since 2003. When given the opportunity to put together a new project, the three jumped at the chance to perform together. The rest fell into place with the addition of Robert “Brass Tongue” Somerville on tenor sax, who sat in with the fledgling project early in the formative process.
Q3: Who are some of your influences?
Our influences range from Coltrane to Radiohead, Charlie Parker to Massive Attack. We have extremely diverse influences.
Q4: What are you looking forward to most about the Catskill Chill?
The opportunity to perform for our fans and having the chance to watch our friend’s bands perform. Festival season gives you that “hang” so to speak, whereas when you are touring the club circuit it’s every band for itself. No band-band camaraderie, if you will.
Q5: What should fans at the Catskill Chill look forward to about your set?
The brown notes. Wet wipes will be distributed before and during our set from the front and sides of the stage, as well as the merch and ticketing locations. Stay fresh, Catskill Chill.
Q6: What other bands are you most excited to play alongside at The Chill?
Yonder, Conspirator, Dopapod, Heavy Pets, Lotus are all awesome and friends of ours.
Q7: You guys continue to tour around the country with your explosive, jazz/funk fusion sound. How would you describe your music to someone who hand’t heard it before?
It’s a stone groove baby.
Q8: Do you have any plans to sit down and record a studio album in the near future?
The band has recorded two studio albums, the first titled “Kung Fu” was released in July of 2011, our latest album (yet to be named) is slated for a winter ’12-’13 release.
Q9: How do you guys decide on a setlist the night of a show or festival set? Do you play a different kind of show for a festival versus headlining a club?
Certain factors go into creating a setlist, for instance, what songs were performed the last time we were in that city? That festival? What kind of crowd are we performing for? What time of day is the set? So forth and so on.
Q10: What do you love most about being a part of Kung Fu?
Getting onto the stage and utterly destroying a crowd. Best drug ever.
Todd, thanks again for talking with us today about Kung Fu and the Catskill Chill Music Festival. We’re excited to see you guys rage at The Chill. The Catskill Chill Music Festival takes place in at Camp Minglewood in Hancock, NY from September 7th-9th. Tickets and more information can be found at www.catskillchill.com.