Formed in 2008, Skösh, a four-piece band from Buckfield, has rocked local audiences for over a decade. Self-described as genre-bending, they dabble in a little bit of everything, from country to funk. Their sophomore album, “Shaking The Ghost,” released in December 2018, found the band settling on a funkier sound, and their live shows have a reputation for being eclectic and energetic.

The band also generates buzz for their promo-videos — the latest of which, advertising a Halloween show at the Franco Center, features the band being terrorized by Pennywise, Stephen King’s monster clown featured in “IT.”

First off, do you mind running through the name, hometown, and most influential musical artist for each band member?

* Jedidiah Allen (drummer/vocals) is from Buckfield. Most influential artists are Metallica, Parliament/Funkadelic, The Black Crowes, Grateful Dead and Prince.

*Elijah Allen (bass/vocals) is from Buckfield. Biggest musical influences would be Frank Zappa, Parliament/Funkadelic, Primus, Ween and Prince.

*Peter Richard (saxophone) is from Lisbon. Most influential artists are Radiohead, Skerik, Ben Ellman, Morphine and Elliot Smith.

*Jay Larkin (guitar/vocals) is from Lewiston. Jay’s most influential artists are Jimi Hendrix, Tool, Parliament/Funkadelic and Smashing Pumpkins.

Facebook says you guys are from Buckfield. Did you know each other before forming Skösh? How did the band form? We are not all from Buckfield. Jed and Eli grew up in Buckfield and still live there. Jay and Pete both live in Lewiston. Skösh was founded in 2008 in Buckfield, by the Allen Brothers and a friend at Buckfield High School. Pete joined in 2011 after sitting in with the band for several gigs. Jay has been a member since 2015.

This is the obligatory “how would you describe your music” question. How would you describe your music? Our music is a mixture of a lot of things, but the base of the blend is definitely a strong mixture of rock and funk. We don’t like to let our original music be constrained by any specific genre. We write songs in accordance with how we feel and whatever genre we think serves the song. We love all kinds of music and enjoy experimenting with different genres.

I’m wondering what the local music scene is like — in Oxford Hills and the L/A area. Is it easy to build up a following? Was it difficult being from a “small town?” It’s not necessarily “easy” to build up a following, though we’ve been fortunate to meet a lot of great and supportive people over the years. We’ve worked hard to keep our show fresh and entertaining, and we’ve also been playing for a long time, which has paid off for us. It wasn’t difficult being from a small town. In the beginning that’s what really pushed us to practice our instruments and work hard on tunes together; there wasn’t a whole lot to do otherwise.

When I was doing some research for this, I landed on the song “Tall Grass” from your debut album in 2012. It has a completely different sound than your current style. What was that progression like? How did you land on funk? The funkier sound of our current album, “Shaking The Ghost,” is less of a progression and more just due to the fact that in our writing sessions leading up to recording, the songs we were compiling were more in the style of funk/R&B. Our first album had songs in many different genres, and we intend to continue to make music outside of this current sound. As a matter of fact, some of the songs we had written from the same sessions vary from hard rock to even country, but, it just worked out that through the writing process we ended up with 10 funky tunes that fit as a cohesive album.

You guys do a ton of live shows. Do you have a venue that’s a “home-base?” There are a few that come to mind, but Fast Breaks (in Lewiston) sticks out in particular. Pete’s family owns Fast Breaks, and we’ve played there for 10 years, so it’s hard not to feel comfortable and at home in that space.

Speaking of live shows, what can an audience member expect from a Skösh show? An audience can expect to see a set that runs the gamut of genres. Skösh means “a little bit” and we try to play a little bit of everything. That goes for both our original music and our cover show. They can also expect to hear some improvisation, segues between songs, and maybe a splash of humor.

I think I’d be exhausted if I put in half the energy you guys do at each show. How do you keep each show fresh? Is each show unique? Each show is unique as we change our sets up every show, and we are constantly working to add new material. That’s equal parts for the audience and to keep things fresh for ourselves. We also improvise live, which is never the same on any given night.

Your “IT 2” parody trailer gained a bit of buzz on Facebook. How did you come up with the idea? We love making humorous promotional videos. The Allen Brothers both went to school for video production, and shoot video professionally for PatraCompany, based in Brunswick. Promo videos are always a way for them to showcase their passions outside of music. We did an “It” promo a few years back when “Chapter One” was in theaters; it only seemed right to rise to the occasion and make another. Especially as we had an upcoming Halloween show.

How’d you do the car stunt? We had Eli (the bass player) hit Pete at a very slow speed. We sped up the shot in post-production, masked out the car and added a bit of motion blur to sell the illusion that the car was going fast.  A pinch of sound fx, and voila! We had a hit-and-run on our hands.

Seems like you guys have a great sense of humor. Does that bleed off into your shows and music? Absolutely. We feel it’s important to take our music seriously, but never take ourselves too seriously. We have a lot of fun and joke around with each other as well as the crowd when we play.

Let’s say you’re taking a road trip. What’s on the playlist? It really depends who’s driving, but it usually ends up being a bunch of Prince.

Do you have any long-term projects on the go? We are working on writing and demoing songs for our next album. We also have a few music videos in the works as well.


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