By Paul Rodgers
VANCOUVER – CKY rose to notoriety in the early 2000s with the inception of the CKY videos; crude, juvenile precursors to the Jackass movie franchise, created by professional skateboarder Bam Margera at the peak of his skateboarding career and the origin of his tumultuous career as an actor/stuntman.
Based out of West Chester, Pennsylvania, CKY was formed by Margera’s brother Jess Margera (drums), Chad I Ginsburg (guitarist/backing vocals) and Deron Miller (guitarist/lead vocalist). The letters CKY bridge the two words “fuCK You,” in case you weren’t sure on that.
While many associate the band with the movies to which they shared a name and provided the soundtracks to, CKY has produced numerous records and have seen success on their own since their 1999 debut Volume 1. Their follow up record Infiltrate-Destroy-Rebuild was released on Island Def Jam and saw the band hit the Billboard 200 charts.
Miller left the band in 2011 and now in 2017, Margera, Ginsburg and bassist Matt Deis have released a new album aptly dubbed The Phoenix. Margera took some time from touring to answer a few questions for BeatRoute.
“Chad and I have been in the band for 20 years, since the beginning. It’s what we know. I’m not sure we know how to do anything else,” says Margera asked what drove the group to get back together and start making music again.
“This album was fun because we had as much time as we wanted and we could hit the studio with fully completed songs instead of just ideas. You simply can not beat hashing out tunes in a room. Writing in the studio and hoping for the best usually doesn’t work out in a live situation.”
The band recorded at the legendary Rancho De La Luna recording studio in Joshua Tree, California. Some heavyweights from their highlight reel include Queens of the Sone Age, Kyuss, UNKLE, and Arctic Monkeys.
“Its like the Abbey Road of the desert. Theres such a great history and vibe there, can’t really describe it,” says Margera. “The gear, the room, the vibe there, the music just flows effortlessly.”
Because they were so closely associated with the skateboard scene (the CKY videos were about half skateboarding with the rest being skits, pranks, stunts and other general shenanigans), the band have different target audiences and inspirations for how they make their music. In their press release, Ginsberg said, “We’re grown adults now with an eagle-eye perspective on who we are, what we do, and how to do it right.” To this, Margera added, speaking on the subject of not only changing fans but a changed music industry:
“It seems like bands in general have more control on the business end of things. There are much more options now. There are about 80 percent less record stores now, which sucks, but the positive side of the industry changing so harshly is that we have more say in how to do things. We just played the UK and most people I talked to outside said they were too young to get in the last we toured there in 2009.”
The group has been invited to tour with titans like Guns N’ Roses, Metallica and Deftness and have some serious prospects in their immediate future. Margera said he is particularly looking forward to playing the Warped Tour. “It’s been about 17 years since we played it. Except now we are on a main stage. In 2000, we basically had to sneak in under the radar and play on the Volcom Stage.”
CKY perform at Dickens Pub (Calgary) on June 13 and the Rickshaw Theatre (Vancouver) on June 14.CKY, Dickens Pub, Rickshaw Theatre