Stokeswood Talks Tropical Heat and In the Field of the Vibrations

We don't have enough live music in Miami. We just don't. So when a band like Stokeswood decides to make its second home in the Magic City, we get a little giddy.

Originally from Georgia, the electro-acoustic band will be playing at The Stage this Saturday as part of Soul Fest.

Tingling with excitement, we interviewed Stokeswood about Miami, tropical heat, and the outfit's new album, In the Field of the Vibrations.

Crossfade: How did you guys get together as a band?

Mark Godwin (band leader and lead guitarist): It's been quite the journey forming the family we now call Stokeswood. Reed Irvine and I have known each other since we were about nine, but didn't start playing music together until college, which is where we met Adam Patterson and Jon Joiner.

Reed and I went out to watch Adam performing solo because we heard he was good. We tracked him down in an alley after the show and proposed getting together to jam sometime. He would later divulge he turned to his buddy after we left and said, "I'll never see those guys again." He was wrong.

So we all did a bunch of acoustic stuff together on a very un-serious note and that was it.  After school, we went a few different directions. But then Adam and I formed Stokeswood as a duo and slowly but surely added Reed and Jon. Justin Mullinix was our producer on the first record, Carassia, and we asked him to join up on bass last November. We literally had two practices with him, then went on tour from Montreal to Miami. Luckily, he knew the songs from having had worked on them in such great detail.

On our new album, In the Field of the Vibrations, we decided we wanted some female vocals for a certain track. We had heard Megg Serrano on a random recording, tracked her down on Facebook and had her come in and sing. We knew as soon as she stepped out of the booth that we wanted her on full time.

You're from Georgia. But you've been spending a lot of time in Miami. How did that happen?

We had been playing South Florida once a season for years with moderate success. But when our sound started evolving to more of a dance-able monster, our popularity in the 305 started taking off, so we just went with it.

Miami feels like home to us now. We have such an amazing group of friends and fans there. And we have played some of the best music of our life, sweating in that tropical heat.

What were you guys trying to convey with In The Field of the Vibrations?

Adam Patterson (lead vocalist): We were trying to convey a sense of surrealism and seriousness built around an electronic sound with themes of trying to understand where we are right now in our lives musically and personally -- all the while being completely aware of our own mortality, however small the scale.

Your music is interesting. What are your influences and inspirations?

We all listen to very different music and obviously some of the same. But it's the amalgamation of all these things that makes our music what it is. Influences range from Aretha Franklin to The Whitest Boy Alive, Paul Simon to Ghostland Observatory, Patty Griffin to Radiohead. And we could do this for hours ...

With the new album release, what's next for you guys?

We just signed with Nimbleslick Entertainment, a booking agency out of the music hub of Athens, Georgia. And they are currently booking our fall tour in conjunction with Galena Mosovich of GMPR, which will continue into 2012 in support of the new album. Within that tour we're are going to be playing the festival circuit as well which we are all excited about.  Also in the fall, In the Field of the Vibrations will be out on iTunes and vinyl.

In our near creative future, we have decided that instead of writing album number three, we are gonna release new music in more interesting ways for a while.  So in the next month expect to see a music video of a brand new track to kick off an onslaught of new releases.

Stokeswood as part of Soul Fest Weekend. Saturday, July 30. The Stage, 170 NE 38th St., Miami. Doors open at 9 p.m. and admission costs $5. Call 305-576-9577 or visit thestagemiami.com.

Follow Crossfade on Facebook and Twitter @Crossfade_SFL.

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