Artist Profile: Bubble Scary

The Amherst-based group on their Battle of the Bands win

Bubble Scary performing at WMUA’s Battle of the Bands. 

Courtesy of Liam Joseph.

Bubble Scary performing at WMUA’s Battle of the Bands. Courtesy of Liam Joseph.

By Paige Hanson, Collegian Correspondent

On Friday, Nov. 11, I sat down with Bubble Scary, a new band on the scene at the University of Massachusetts.

The band consists of a lead singer, guitarist, bassist and drummer. Lead singer, Chuka Stergios, is a UMass junior majoring in psychology in the BDIC program; guitarist Corey Cash is a junior majoring in political science; bassist Jackson Payne is a junior majoring in computer science; and drummer Miguel Gomba is a sophomore majoring in marketing with a minor in music.

In the beginning, they were all just friends. Miguel, Corey, and Jackson would jam together in the Van Meter music room. Jackson and Chuka were in a band together already, and Jackson  thought that she would be a good fit with the three other guys.

“It went from a ‘having fun jamming’ kind of thing to ‘this would be fun actually to do,’” Gomba said.

Bubble Scary’s first performance was in a friend’s backyard. The band had “very bad gear” for their set and the weather was cold, but they had a lot of fun. “It was kind of intimate but with a lot of people we didn’t know, which was really nice. A lot of people gave us feedback,” Stergios said.

Bubble Scary was the winner of WMUA’s Battle of the Bands, which was hosted at The Drake on Oct. 15. The experience was fun yet nerve-racking for the band. “I think it’s weird when you walk into a place that’s a place for music rather than a backyard or a basement. This was also very early on in the band, but it was so fun seeing the other bands play,” Stergios said.

The last thing Bubble Scary was thinking about that night was winning. They really enjoyed performing and listening to amazing music throughout the night.

“It did kind of leave a bad taste in my mouth that someone had to win at the end of the night,” Payne said.

The band is extremely happy that people have enjoyed the music they’ve written, but instead of seeing an audience or followers on Instagram as fans, they see them as part of one big community that all enjoy one thing: music.

“I think a lot of bands around here have had this relationship with the fans, like a cult following, and I don’t really like that idea. I think the idea of every single person in the audience trying to start a band makes us feel like more of a community,” Payne said.

One aspect the band is really trying to push is being extremely supportive of one another in the UMass band scene and focusing on the music itself.

“The people in bands want people to listen to their music. If you have that supply of people who are really invested in the music that’s coming out of here, then I think shows will follow. At the very least, Amherst is a good spot because there is a big artistic community and there are a lot of people who want to see it flourish but it’s a matter of grinding it out,” Cash said.

The band expressed its idea of producing CDs in the future. “I’ve gotten a lot of CDs at shows, and I always listen to them. If someone gives me a QR code, I’ll maybe check it out. The CD is physical, you’ll always have it, and you can say to yourself, ‘I haven’t listened to this one in a long time,’” Cash said. Displaying art at a show and releasing music on streaming services are other ideas that the band is considering.

Spreading their music around Western Massachusetts is a major goal for the band members. They would love to connect with local bands and colleges to foster a community. “We want to use the band as a vessel to build up a community and to lay out where we can play for other people,” Cash said.

Find Bubble Scary on Instagram: @bubble.scary.


Paige Hanson can be reached at [email protected]