(Earl of Funk You by Tara Gracer)
Howdy SCampers! Camp Counselor Sasha here once again, this time to introduce you to some of my newest and funkiest friends. Funk You is a 9-piece ensemble hailing from Augusta, GA. They’re celebrating their 10th anniversary and the release of their 6th album “Moving Forward” with a massive tour schedule.
I was fortunate enough to catch them in Asheville, as well as Summer Camp where I got to sit down with some of the guys in their RV for an interview. Before we roll the footage, allow me to introduce the band.
Funk You is composed of Gavin Hamilton on vocals, Evan Miller on guitar, William Foster on keys & vocals, Palmer Owens on percussion, Will Clark on drums & vocals, and Mark Dykes AKA Earl on bass & vocals.
What sets them apart from other bands is their fantastic horn section, which became a part of the band in 2018. Featuring Gnarly G on sax & flute, Josh Spilliards on trombone, and Geoff Wood on trumpet & guitar, they’ll really get your toes tappin’ and booty shakin’.
While the band has been playing together for years, “Moving Forward” was the first time the horn section got involved in the compositional process. When the pandemic shut down live gigs, the guys had plenty of time to write, rehearse, and record. The result is a 40-minute funky dance party of a studio album that really encompasses the band’s ethos. In case you missed the link above, give it a spin from the player below:
My old friend Jake Knoll is their tour manager and a long-time SCamper himself. He hooked us up with the VIP treatment for their gig in Asheville so I could cover it for the Summer Camp channels. The SCamp family runs deep, y’all!
Prior to this summer, the whole 9-piece band was touring the country in a van. They got a serious upgrade after purchasing an RV off of a band member’s uncle, which I got a tour of while hanging with them backstage (along with some tequila shots, for the record). It’s still tight quarters for sure, but they make it work somehow.
Speaking of making it work, Will wasn’t able to make this particular gig. The band went ahead and set up his keys anyway because that’s just how they roll! One of the coolest points of the show came when a random dude in the crowd asked if he could sit in on keys. Since Funk You is just that cool of a band, they obliged. Turns out the dude could rip it on the keys and the result was a fantastic jam. These are the moments we live for when going to shows, people!
Unfortunately, we had some inclement weather that night in Asheville for an outdoor show. The guys in Funk You don’t let it rain on their parade though, and they still brought their A-game for those willing to get a lil’ wet and wild with them on a cool summer night. Maybe it was the tequila, or the numerous beers Jake stuffed in my coat pockets throughout the show, but I danced my tail off and had an absolute blast!
When Summer Camp rolled around, I caught up with the guys backstage before their noon set on Friday afternoon. It was hot as hell and the unforgiving Midwestern sun was beating down on us all.
While the Jauntee played on the Campfire Stage, the band was writing out their setlist in the green room. In all my years of going to shows, that was the first time I actually got to watch a band plan out their set. It was cool seeing that creative process up close, especially for a band this big with so many different pieces.
With my first Camp Counselor meeting in the church fast approaching, I asked the guys about doing an interview. We discussed the possibility of doing it later that night until we all decided we’d rather be partying than “working” on a Friday night at SCamp. As such, a few of us popped into the RV to find some shade and relative peace & quiet. Now, for your viewing pleasure, I present to you my interview with Funk You:
Sasha Savinov – Interviewer/Video
Robert Kjev – Editor
Be sure you check out their tour dates to see if they’re coming to a town near you. I’ll toss my personal recommendation in for their New Year’s Eve show in Asheville, North Carolina with other SCamp regulars Keller Williams and Pigeons Playing Ping Pong.
The theme for the evening is “Arena 54” – an arena show with a dash of Area 51 and a smidgen of Studio 54. It’s basically going to be a space disco and it’s going to be a super fun way to welcome 2022. I’ll be there running our Spot-A-SCamper promotion where you can win a bunch of cool stuff by rocking your SCamp gear, so come on out and get alien funky with us! Until next time, SCampers…
Looking for more Summer Camp Music Festival interviews and other video releases by our Camp Counselor team? Click the button below to watch them all on our YouTube playlist. You can stay in tune with all of the content from the Camp Counselor program at our blog, The Campfire.