Phunk Junkeez Biography
"Disko" Danny D.
Once again, back, it's the incredible PHUNK JUNKEEZ. Working towards the follow up to their last album, Fear Of A Wack Planet (Trauma Records), Arizona's number one party band, the PHUNK JUNKEEZ have barricaded themselves in the studio to record their fourth full length album "JUNKEEZ 4 LIFE." The current success of artist owned independent labels has the band asking, "why not do it all ourselves?" After many years learning the ropes of recording, touring and marketing, the band decided to do just that. With the help of their longtime manager Willobee Carlan, the PHUNK JUNKEEZ have started their own record label UNCLE SCAM Records and built a brand new recording facility to their own specifications. As a preview to the forthcoming album, they will release an EP containing two tracks from "JUNKEEZ 4 LIFE", a re-mix and two previously unreleased live tracks. The EP will be released on October 29th and also be made available on the band's brand new web site, www.phunkjunkeez.com.
A potent phunk up of punk, hip-hop and rock, front man Soulman explains, "What we do is music for everybody, we don't come with any message except 'have a good time.' There are enough rock stars, what we need are entertainers. We come to the party and we rock the shit. You know how if you have a great party, the cops show up to tell you to keep it down? When we party, it just can't be that good unless the cops come." He speaks from experience. Formed in 1991, Arizona's rap-rock pioneers quickly became an underground phenomenon fusing non-conformist funk, with the relatively "new" sounds of hip-hop and rap, reinforced with good ol' rock n' roll. In the early days, the PHUNK JUNKEEZ would buy a few kegs of beer, spread the word about a party going down, break into a warehouse and perform there. The police would arrive soon after and threaten to throw them all in jail. Soulman recalls, "We would fire off another song and then bolt out the back door. Our friends would run out the front, and we'd meet up later at Burger King and collect our money."
Front man "Soulman" has been a rap enthusiast since the days of disc jockeying Phoenix clubs with fellow band mate Jeff Scott, best known as DJ Roachclip. Both Soulman and Roachclip are Alaska natives. Remarkably, they've discovered that they grew up in the same trailer park there. They never met face to face at the time, but have identical recollections now of certain distinctive residents and neighbors from childhood. Soulman and Roachclip began their rap careers, along with former band mate K-tel Disco, back in the days of Run DMC, and Grandmaster Flash. With a couple of impressive gigs beneath their belts, opening for then-megastar rap icons MC Hammer, De La Soul, and Ice-T, Soulman set his sights on acquiring as a backup band a live local rock outfit that showed extreme potential. "Jumbo" James Woodling was a young bass thumper growing weary of the local scene, and tired of his part-time local television band gig. Drummer "Disko" Daniel K. Mueller was a well known power hitter, but was hesitant at first to join such a "bizarre" concept band. Both signed up. Guitarists came and went during the recording session of "I Am A Junkee," until the band persuaded Jeff O'Rourke (a highly creative graduate of NYU film school with several independent films and record productions to his credit) to accept the open slot.
Over the next two years the PHUNK JUNKEEZ, sometimes containing up to eight un-official members and traveling with a nine man crew, continued to duck and dodge local authorities with their trademark desert style warehouse parties and speak-easy type underground all night dance raves. As their pressure-cooked desert "phunk" began to scorch the southwest, constant touring and self-promotion with no label support paid off in late 1994. Trauma Records signed the PHUNK JUNKEEZ during the tracking of their second album, Injected, a heavier, harder edged album than their first release, but still staying true to their funk, hip-hop roots. The successful first track, "I Love It Loud" was a PHUNK JUNKEEZ tribute to heavy-metal legends KISS, and landed on the soundtrack to the cult film Tommy Boy (featuring fellow Arizona homeboy David Spade, and the late Chris Farley). The song's video was inspired by the group's warehouse escapades and featured roles for both Farley and Spade. The second single, "Me 'n Yer Girl," showed the band at its funky fresh satirical best. "Me 'n Yer Girl" continues to be a nationwide strip club favorite, and its video (cardboard miniatures, blue screens, fifty-foot woman and all) is a Playboy channel classic.
Following two years of touring, the new PHUNK JUNKEEZ release, Fear of a Wack Planet was recorded in Amsterdam, Holland. Produced by Lee Popa (best known for his live production techniques for the likes of Living Color, Killing Joke, Ministry, and various Chicago blues legends) and mixed by Trauma Co-President Paul Palmer and Popa, it is an overall smoother album than past efforts, but remains potently funky. Says Soulman, "Injected was really aggressive, leaning towards our punk side. We went for it and we still have that. But now, we want to take our music somewhere else. This album is more groove, all groove, whether it's fast or slow, hard or soft." The head-boppin' "It's Something" and computer-esque "MyReality" highlight the PHUNK JUNKEEZ trip-hop roots, while the heart pumpin' "Adrenaline" and self-righteous "Million Rappers" remind listeners of their punk rock attitude. Smooth listeners like "Problems," "World-Wide Shakedown" and "Hazee" move and groove, and display a spiritually revitalized PHUNK JUNKEEZ sound. The energized "Adrenaline" has already been featured in the movie and soundtrack to An American Werewolf in Paris, as well as ESPN's X-Games III soundtrack.
PHUNK JUNKEEZ are making KISStory. "I LOVE IT LOUD" from the INJECTED album is included on an awesome KISS Tribute compilation "KISS YOUR SISTER" soon to be released on RELATIVITY
(Phunk Junkeez - continued)
RECORDS. This track will be on the collection along with tributes from FOO FIGHTERS, WHITE ZOMBIE, THE REPLACEMENTS, POISON, ARGENT, RED KROSS, RED HOUSE PAINTERS, THE MELVINS, WENDY O. WILLIAMS, ANTHRAX, GENE SIMMONS, ACE FREHLEY and yes...CHER.
Recently, the band has been credited with contributing to the success of the local music culture. Not bad for a handful of desert kids who used to throw keg parties in an industrial park smack dab in the middle of America's retirement community. The band has grown from playing warehouse parties to co-headlining the 100.3 The Edge's "THAT DAMN SHOW" in Phoenix, and 103.9 Party Radio's PARTYPALOOZAfor thousands of fans. "These were people who had seen us play for years and knew all we'd been through--and we rocked the house." A lyrical lunatic on stage, dancing and strutting, Soulman says his wild antics are not an act. "The second I step on stage, I freak out. I felt like I need oxygen but I tell myself, 'You can't pass out!' I push it to the limit every night. Last summer, PHUNK JUNKEEZ toured extensively throughout the U.S. with new pals INSANE CLOWN POSSE.
The PHUNK JUNKEEZ recently added guitarist DANNY P. to their family. DANNY hails from Phoenix phavorites SURF BALLISTICS and replaces JEFF O'ROURKE who has moved to Los Angeles Land to pursue a career in film making. Now, get ready for the next millennium with the new CD "JUNKEEZ 4 LIFE."
For more info go to: www.phunkjunkeez.com