“A mix of hip-hop, funk, electro, and rock”
By Leslie Krouse
Photos By Blair Robb
Vokab Kompany is fast becoming one of the hottest groups to hit the streets of San Diego, and soon to be setting the world on fire. The brainchild of Burkey Baby and Robbie Gallo, the two met in Tahoe about 15 years ago, and musically meshed instantly. Moving forward to bring us an eclectic compilation of genres and sounds. “The New Kong’ is the latest delivery. This critically acclaimed new album, is a mix of hip-hop, funk, electro, and rock, throw in some heavy bass and some sweet vocals, and you have one bad-ass CD. They have re-defined the standard for music. I dragged the boys down to Belmont Park for an incredible, and fun, photo shoot. BTW a special shout out to Alvaro Nunez the incredible drummer for Vokab, who didn’t get his new visa in time to be able to get in on the shoot. Kudos to Alvaro, he makes the trek from Mexico just to play in the band. Now, here are more fun facts about the band.
RIS: What you think of that insane photo shoot?
VOKAB: Insane. We couldn’t imagine any photo shoot ever being any better than that. You should have ridden the Roller Coaster with us. 5 times. There was a bunch of mirrors, a roller coaster, some motion sickness, a yellow submarine, and some funny pants.
RIS: So tell us. Who is Vokab Kompany?
VOKAB: Well, I’m Burkey Baby, and this is Rob Hurt (aka Robbie Gallo) we are the MC’s and singers of the band. We’ve got Geoff Nigl on Keyboard, and Aaron Cheatham who plays the bass; he’s usually half naked all the time. Then there is Spencer Sharpe our Violinist, it’s just something that really defines our sound, is having the violinist mixed in with the hip-hop, and the heavy synths. and then throw in some funky bass. Our guitarist Jeremy Holmes, who will call cut anytime he wants, he plays a lot of cool stuff. And our drummer Alvero who is in Mexico today, he’s really handsome, and he usually wears a diaper and bonnet.
RIS: Describe Vokab’s Music?
VOKAB: So, Vokab Kompany, it’s hip-hop, it’s live, and it’s fun, we think it’s exciting. It has electronic influence to it. Real heavy Synth, and a new sound, with the heavy funk, and the heavy bass.
RIS: Now you have a show coming up on October 31st, with Revolt In Style.
ROBBIE: It’s called Boo-Fest it’s Halloween. We are going to have a good group, and friends of ours called 3rd Burrough. A DJ that is one of our best friends, named DJ Carlo. He plays all that good, new stuff that actually San Diego needs to be put on. And a lot of good music to dance to. We are fortunate enough to work with you guys at Revolt, and billing this as our big CD release party, as well. We have been working on this ‘The New Kong’ album for over a year and we finally have it ready to release it to you guys, to the city, to the state, and the world.
BURKEY: Hey, we’ve got some great guests on the album. Souleye, from the band Boulevard. We have the whole band Mutaytor, they let us do a remix, and they’re sick. They got the base player from Oingo Boingo Johnny Avila from back in the day. They have Hambone from Social D on the drums; they are a sick eclectic band out of LA. Like a circus act, they are awesome. We got Lateef The Truth Speaker, who’s been one of Robbie and mines favorite hip-hop artist for the last 15 years. We’ve got Radioactive(Spearhead) awesome musician, crazy freak of nature. We got our buddy Deploi from LA; he works with a group called House of Vibe. We got Karen Mills who is Jason Mraz back up singer. J Boogie, a sick DJ out of San Francisco. Solovox out of Oregon. A lot of people came together to collaborate on this project. That’s why we are a Kompany.
RIS: The new album ‘The New Kong” is Great! “That Day” is my favorite song. What influenced the record?
VOKAB: Sick. ‘That Day’ was produced by Freddy Machete another sick producer out of the Bay area. The whole idea is that Burke and I have just so much different influence as far as music goes. From Hip-hop, to rock, to metal, to electronic. It’s just cool that we are able to incorporate all this into one album, with different producers, and the great band that we have.
RIS: Any shouts out to anyone here in San Diego?
VOKAB: 3rd Burrough a sick band. The Grand Artique, is a little shop over there on Grand Ave, they got us dressed and got us some outfits for the shoot. Our best friend just opened up a new Deli in Mission Beach called the Rubicon Deli. Of course Revolt In Style Magazine. We are very stoked to be working with you guys. It’s definitely a community down here.