MGM Biography
Monkey Gone Mad Members:
  • Ian Rafalak- vocals, trumpet
  • Brendan McLaughlin- guitar, vocals
  • Kate Penn- trombone, vocals
  • Jason Rafalak- bass, vocals
  • Jeff Pierce- keys, vocals
  • Jesse Winchester- drums
  • Arya Chowdhury- guitar, vocals
  • Adam "Number 2" Siegel- alto/tenor sax
  • Dean Keller- tenor/bari sax, bass clarinet

      Monkey Gone Mad is upstate New York's hidden secret of ska/funk/punk/hiphop about to be revealed. Comprised of members of other projects such as The Renowned Army, Westbound Train, One Sweet World, Pocket Protector and See Girl Run, MGM has been developing their unique style for 8 years, influenced by the tastes of all 9 members. From Fishbone, to NOFX, to the Roots, a little bit of everything gets thrown into the DNA of this musical organism.
      With their appearance on the much anticipated ska compilation "Still Standing" (also featuring such artists as the Mighty Mighty Bosstones, Slackers and Toasters), MGM got a dose of national (and to an extent international) exposure, which put them on the map in the ska scene. However, it would be a gross oversimplification to simply label their music "ska."
      The sound that has been incubating for these years and has only been available in limited amounts on compilations and the band's 2001 EP "Skunk With a Porpoise" is about to be born through their first full length album "Listen..." The spectrum of ideas present within the band is finally documented, ranging from the old-school Jamaican "Reggae People," to the hard-hitting hip hop of "Right Now," to the quirky ska-pop of "Sometimes". And it's tight: clean production, yet managing to preserve the organic sound of MGM.

    Fun Facts about MGM's new album "Listen..."

  • It features several special guests such as Paddy Kilrain, Sean Rowe and Skunk from Perfect Thyroid
  • The California Van Song contains secret hidden messages. Are they communist propaganda? the real story behind #2's name? Find out for yourself!
  • Featured rapper, Badi, was actually in Thailand through almost the entire recording of the album.
  • The previously unreleased MGM classic "Sometimes" is finally presented here in all its glory. Music theorists and poets alike will spend the next several centuries decoding its harmonic intricacy and rich tapestry of couplets
  • Following in the footsteps of multivocalist bands such as Sly and the Family Stone, there are at least 5 lead singers featured on Listen...
  • For the punk rocker who also can't get enough bluegrass, "Simple Mathematics" features distorted fiddle
  • Due to the high standards held by the band (and not at all because of procrastination, goofing off or having "better things to do") the album took almost a full year to reach its eventual state of shear musical perfection

    Over the years, Monkey Gone Mad's live show has evolved, but the constants of high energy and spontaneity have always been part of the picture. With 9 members, there's never a dull moment. Smooth transitions keep the flow, while surprise covers and feel changes keep you guessing. We love what we do and we're pretty sure you'll dig it. See you at the show!

    For MGM press photos/album artwork, click here.
  • Individual Profiles...

    [an error occurred while processing this directive] This is where members of Monkey Gone Mad list their personal profiles so you can learn more about them. Please forgive them if some choose to make up weird names, answers, or photos... they're just wacky, wacky musicians.

    Just select the name from the drop down menu above.