Artist info


Rock, Roots

Sounds like

touches of Ben Harper, touches of red hot chili peppers, A melting pot of influences all round

band members

Lucas Proudfoot - Vocal + Acoustic Guitar, Marty Shang - Electric Guitar + Vocals, Brendan Carr - Drums + Vocals,Grahem Newman-bass+vocals


Live music!!, Motown vibes, Overseas travel, Great songwriters and so on



Max Judo – Elevator Pitch Max Judo aren’t your garden-variety roots, rock, soul combo. They are fronted by an ex-pro surfer, who freely switches between a didgeridoo and a guitar during their set. This year has been studded with success for the Qld group. They took out a Q Song award, for their tune, “What’s Going On?”, toured the USA in April and September, playing a slew of shows from the east to the west coast, and what’s more, they’ve minted their new album, Good Tonight, working with producer Caleb James, who’s lent his Midas-touch to groups such as Yves Klein Blue and Skipping Girl Vinegar. To top it off they’ve been awarded an Australian Indigenous Music Scholarship, and will be playing at One Movement Festival, Perth, before heading back to the US & UK in 2010. Max Judo Bio The adjective `unique' gets bandied about in far too many band bios ﷓ a unique sound, a unique stage presence, a unique whatever. It sounds impressive, but is the status really justified? Well Australia's Max Judo are unique. There, we said it. Find us another roots, rock, soul combo fronted by an ex pro surfer who freely switches between a didjeridoo and an acoustic guitar during the set and we'll back down. Lucas Proudfoot, who spent five years on the international longboard circuit, says the splashes of didjeridoo in Max Judo's sonic palette have added a `wow factor' that's got audiences up and dancing in Australia, the US, Japan and Brazil. ``I guess it is a bit intriguing for crowds who haven't seen anything like it before ﷓ the didj in a rock band,'' says Proudfoot of the band's totem instrument. ``It's become this familiar point for us and I don't think we've played a show yet where someone hasn't come up and told us they dug it.'' Proudfoot says the didj has been part of Max Judo’s sound since the band formed in 2002 on Australia's Tweed Coast, a short drive from most of the country's best surfing beaches. ``At the start it was a matter of pooling what we had, but it's never been used just for the sake of it,'' he says. ``And that's been a big part of our growth, writing songs that stand on their own no matter what instruments we play them on.'' Regular airplay on Australia’s FUEL TV and inclusion on several surf film soundtracks has also helped grow their fan-base. “The last 18 months has been really inspiring period because the crowds are really starting to build for a Max Judo show,’’ says Proudfoot. “If we’re not selling out a venue, we’re doubling the numbers through the door each time we go back”. After two years cutting their teeth in front of surf crowds up and down the east coast of Australia, the band welcomed UK-born bassist Graham Newman into the fold, an addition that Proudfoot says brought `new blood and new stability'. The re-energised Max Judo then cracked Japan, where their inclusion on a compilation of surf music, alongside the likes of Jack Johnson, led to the production of an exclusive Japanese release, and tour in 2005. “The Japanese crowds were a great way for us to break the international touring circuit,” says Proudfoot, “They really loved our sound, and have such a vibrant market”. “It was a great learning curve – working out how labels worked, how to win over new crowds live and how we needed to really step it up to compete internationally.’’ And step it up they did, opening a crack in the US college circuit with a pistol-hot showcase gig at the National Association for Campus Activities summit in Missouri earlier in 2008. Response to the gig from the event’s 3000-strong audience prompted the group’s first tour of the US in April last year, with the band confident they’d made their mark just seconds after walking off stage. With three more US-tours under their belt, and shows at the US Open of Surfing, at the famous “surf city”, Huntington Beach, California, Max Judo are certainly making their mark on the highly sought-after US market. “We played on the last day and even the stage manager said we were the pick of the concert,’’ says Proudfoot, who also counted a 50-deep queue for autographs at the band’s post-show signing. “They’re usually pretty jaded, after 3 days of showcasing, so for this guy to tell us we were “the pick of the bunch” was pretty amazing.’’ To date Max Judo has played slots on the Big Day Out, the Woodford Folk Festival, The Dreaming Festival, the Newtown Festival and Yabun National Indigenous Festival. With a slot at the One Movement Festival secured, alongside the likes of Blue King Brown, Hilltop Hoods, Sarah Blasko, and Art Vs Science, the band is now establishing themselves on the Australian music and festival scene also. On the award front, they’ve scored Coca Cola Live n Local prize for most inspirational song/lyrics and last year earned their second consecutive DEADLY Award nomination for band of the year. This year has seen the band win the Q Song award, for their track “What’s Going On?”. Work on their forthcoming album was completed at Byron Bay’s Studio 301, where the boys insisted on a daily surf before plugging in to record. With one of Australia’s finest producers on board, the Brisbane-based Caleb James had no trouble getting the best from the lads. “We start most days with a surf as well,’’ laughs Proudfoot, who says the hardest parts of putting the record together have been settling on just 12 songs and coming up with a title. “For us, getting two hours in the ocean is about freeing the mind and setting up the day, just like some people need to jog or some people need to sleep in.’’ Max Judo are: Lucas Proudfoot - vocals, acoustic guitar, didjeridoo Marty Shang - guitar, backing vocals Brendan Carr - drums, backing vocals Graham Newman - bass guitar