‘To All Of You: The CKY Story'
CKY is an American alternative metal band that formed in West Chester, Pennsylvania in 1998. Since its inception the band has comprised lead vocalist and guitarist Deron Miller, guitarist and backing vocalist Chad I Ginsburg and drummer Jess Margera, and currently includes bassist Matt "Matty J" Janaitis.
The band's first studio album, Volume 1, was released in in 1999 on Distant. This was followed in 2002 by Infiltrate•Destroy•Rebuild on Island/Def Jam, which also released An Answer Can Be Found three years later.
CKY later signed to Roadrunner and released its fourth studio album, Carver City, in 2009.
And now, CKY has announced the release of 'B-SIDES & RARITIES' through Mighty Loud Entertainment and Universal/Fontana. The 12-song compilation features a dozen unreleased, rare, and long out-of-print tracks culled from the historic past of a band that truly has done whatever they wanted for 15 years, without compromise.
Exclusive Magazine recently sat down with drummer Jess Margera and discussed their latest CD, his favorite CKY work to date, the Russian Czar heritage amongst them, and, of course, ... Penguins!
Taking it from the top and how easy has it been to keep the same line-up since the bands inception, some 13 years ago now? "APART FROM BASS PLAYERS, IT HAS BEEN PRETTY EASY SO FAR. OUR BASS PLAYERS SEEM TO SPONTANEOUSLY COMBUST AFTER A FEW YEARS. BUT OUR NEWEST BASS PLAYER MATTY J WE HAVE KNOWN FOR 15 YEARS SO I THINK HE WILL PROBABLY STICK AROUND FOR THE LONG HAUL. BUT HEY, WHAT THE HELL DO I KNOW? I'M JUST A DRUMMER."
And, for the record, as CKY stands for Camp Kill Yourself, why do you never go under that full title - and just what other ideas were being considered at the time of a band name conception? "THAT WAS ORIGINALLY SUPPOSED TO BE A LOW BUDGET HORROR FILM WE WERE GOING TO DO BACK IN THE 90S. THEN OUT OF LAZINESS I GUESS WE JUST ENDED UP CALLING THE BAND AND THE HOME VIDEOS WE DID WITH MY BROTHER CAMP KILL YOURSELF. WHICH EVENTUALLY GOT SHORTENED TO "CKY" BY EVERYONE WE WORKED WITH (AGAIN, I BLAME LAZINESS). AND EVER SINCE THEN IT JUST STUCK."
Indeed, with all the albums that you've released under your belt, which one stands out to be your favorite thus far - and why? "VOLUME 1 WILL ALWAYS BE MY FAVORITE I THINK, THATS THE RECORD THAT GOT US HERE."
Your new album is entitled 'B-Sides & Rarities' so does this mean that you didn't actually have to do anything towards it studio wise? Being that they are indeed B-sides and rarities, weren't they already in the can somewhere? "WELL, HALF THE RECORD WAS RELEASED (IN PRETTY BAD SOUND QUALITY, HAHA) ON A VERY LIMITED DOUBLE ALBUM WE DID CALLED "VOLUME 2". SO ON THIS WE ACTUALLY WENT BACK AND DUG THROUGH THE MASTER TAPES AND THEN CHAD DID A MUCH-NEEDED REMASTER ON THEM. THEN THE OTHER HALF IS NEWER RECORDINGS OF OLD SONGS WITH THE EXCEPTION OF "AFTERWORLD" WHICH IS A BRAND NEW SONG WE DID FOR THE 'JACKASS 3D' MOVIE."
Featuring a dozen unreleased, rare and long out-of-print tracks, which one of these tracks means the most to you now to have back in the public eye - and why? "I HAVE BEEN WANTING TO HEAR AN ACOUSTIC VERSION OF 'TO ALL OF YOU' SINCE THE FIRST DAY WE RECORDED IT. AND I AM VERY IMPATIENT. ONLY TOOK 12 YEARS, NO BIG DEAL!"
Back in 2007 the band took a year long hiatus - what did you do in that break? "OH THE WORK NEVER STOPS AT MY HOUSE, I RELEASED ABOUT 3 OR 4 RECORDS DURING THAT BREAK AND DID A COUPLE TOURS, MOSTLY IN EUROPE."
Hearing more and more about the CKY Alliance who or what is this building phenom? And, how does one join? "WE STARTED THE CKY ALLIANCE IN OUR EARLY DAYS AND IT IS BASICALLY A BUNCH OF PEOPLE WHO ARE FED UP (LIKE US) OF THE COOKIE-CUTTER, HOP ON A TREND AND RIDE IT STYLE OF ROCK AND ROLL MUSIC THAT HAS BEEN RUINING ROCK CULTURE FOR MANY, MANY YEARS. IT'S JUST SAD AND IT IS ABSOLUTELY THE REASON WHY ROCK MUSIC IS IN SUCH A SORRY ASS PIECE OF SHIT STATE THAT IT IS IN RIGHT NOW. 99 PERCENT OF THE TIME ORIGINALITY IS SHUNNED AND FACELESS STALE BANDS LIKE "BREAKING BENJAMIN" ARE REWARDED."
"IT'S F**KING PATHETIC TO BE HONEST. I WOULD GO AS FAR AS TO SAY IT IS HURTING AMERICA AND IT MAKES ME FEEL BAD FOR HUMANS AND OUR EVOLUTION ALTOGETHER. EVOLUTION DID NOT END WITH US GROWING THUMBS, AND WHEN I HEAR THE NEWEST NICKELBACK SINGLE I CAN ACTUALLY FEEL MY THUMBS STARTING TO WITHDRAWAL."
It's also been noted that you have a band member that has family that can be traced back to a Russian Czar! Any idea which one? And if this is indeed true, does that make this individual royalty amongst you all?! "THAT WOULD BE MR. MATTY J AND WHEN WE PLAYED RUSSIA LAST YEAR WE WERE TREATED VERY, VERY WELL. I AM GUESSING IT HAD SOMETHING TO DO WITH HIS ROYAL STATUS????"
What was your last tattoo, and as we're not called Exclusive Magazine for nothing, what will be your next one - and where?! "NO TATTOOS ON ME YET, BUT IF I WAS FORCED TO GET ONE AT GUN-POINT IT WOULD PROBABLY BE GEORGE CARLIN HOLDING THE '2 COMMANDMENTS'!"
Lastly, and throwing you a journalistic curve ball, Exclusive Magazine love penguins ... do you, perhaps? "I HAD THE DISPLEASURE OF EATING PENGUIN MEAT WHEN I WAS FILMING IN ICELAND ONCE. I HIGHLY RECOMMEND NOT EATING PENGUINS BY ALL MEANS. IT DOES NOT TASTE LIKE CHICKEN!"
Interview: Russell A. Trunk
So, if you would like to win a copy of their new CD - possibly a SIGNED copy (even we don't know yet!) - just answer this easy question: The foundations of CKY can be traced back to 1992, when vocalist/guitarist Deron Miller and drummer Jess Margera met at East High School in their hometown of West Chester, Pennsylvania. The two became friends and began performing music together soon after, forming an experimental metal band named ... what?!
Send us your answers and if you're correct you'll be in the running to win one of these wonderful (and possiblu signed) CDs! Just send us an e:mail here before May 1st with your answer and the subject title CONTEST: CKY (POSSIBLY SIGNED) CDs to: email@example.com
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