For five years Sugarshack has been providing us with music videos that take us beyond the typical in-studio performances. With a tropical look and intimate setting, these productions not only bring the sounds of vibes of the South Florida-based studio but also a rare look at rising talent.
With that said, I was able to spend a little more time with the crew at Cali Roots this past May, and not only do they bring a great vibe, but they are super cool people to hang with.
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Whether the sessions are filmed at their studio or on the road at festivals, Sugarshack captures the band’s heart and soul. Luckily, we were able to snag a few minutes for a quick interview with Sugarshack’s founder Eddie!
The Pier: Hey Eddie! Thank you for talking with us today. We have so much admiration for your channel and the content that you have been putting out, I have to ask, what inspired you to start Sugarshack?
E.K.: I played drums in a band for many years and was always the guy with a camera. I found my love for filmmaking through wakeboarding and skateboarding. I started filming for my friends and helping them get sponsored. Eventually gained the confidence to start taking on freelance video gigs like real estate, weddings, small music videos, etc.
I had the opportunity with a band that needed a tropical setting for a music video and suggested using my back deck, they loved the idea so we ran with it. Once I had finished that edit and saw the potential for the space I thought it could be a good opportunity to start a live session channel, a concept I’ve always loved. My band had been broken up for a bit at this point and I had a really solid network established with artists all over Florida. So I convinced 4 other guys to start it up with me and the rest is history.
We started with locals and friends to build our content library then eventually I started cold emailing touring artists and we built it from there. The same crew is still doing it to this day along with 5 other team members now.
The Pier: That is an inspiring backstory. Probably like many, I discovered Sugershack through the festival scenes. I’ve noticed that you guys have been producing videos for a few of the ones we love. How did you meet up with Reggae Rise-Up?
E.K.: Alongside building our YouTube channel we’ve always been building a media company, offering video, photo and graphic design services to clients. Reggae Rise Up brought us on 6 years ago to cover their Florida event, next-day edits and after movies. We’ve been covering their events ever since plus now bringing in our own pop-up and retail activation.
The Pier: Similarly, how did you meet up with Cali Roots?
E.K.: Cali Roots is a similar story, they brought us on to cover all of their media needs, next day edits and after movie and we slowly integrated our channel more and more. The pop-up activation isn’t up to the scale that Rise-Upp is yet but we’re working towards it!
The Pier: I definitely look forward to more festival content! I’ve always been curious, how did the name Sugarshack come about?
E.K.: The Sugarshack is my personal home in Bonita Springs, Florida. When I moved into it 11 years ago, my band at the time had been using it as a practice space while I was in between leases and had not moved in yet. One day our bassist walked in and said “Man, this is a sweet little Sugarshack!”. The name stuck and all our friends and fam started calling the house the Sugarshack. When it came time to start the channel I needed a name and Sugarshack Sessions just felt right, a name you can’t forget (or even say properly lol)
The Pier: And finally, I thing I love the most about your videos is the way you & your team capture the music, there is an inmate feel about the recordings that carry from the sessions to the pop-ups, how did you start in this field, was there someone you trained with?
E.K.: Majority of the team here are musicians first. I’ve personally spent a lot of time on stage, performing, recording, etc. I know what musicians are looking for. It’s been the intention since day one, let’s create content that musicians are proud of and truly want to share, but at the same time let’s create a live version of your music no one has ever heard or seen yet. Were all self taught on the filmmaking side of things, or even from the “school of YouTube”. We are constantly improving our craft and educating ourselves on ways to make it look and sound even better. We take it very seriously but at the same time really enjoy the process and have a good time with our artists.
While the interview above is a quick look at the beginnings of Sugarshack, Eddie was quick to point “Here’s a few podcast I did with my guys that dives into all of this.” Check out the full story here:
By: Mercedes Romana