Stellar Kart: 'Almost a Real Band'
By Jennifer E. Jones
Adam Agee is sitting in an unusually quiet mall food court in Ontario, California, just east of Lost Angeles. The 24 year-old lead singer of Christian punk band Stellar Kart is catching a moment of peace before heading out on a massive tour that has the four boys from Arizona booked well into July.
Jennifer: You guys tour a lot.
Adam: We try to.
Jennifer: This is the first time you’ve been out with Kutless, right?
Adam: We’ve played one show with them, and we’ve seen them a couple of times. They’re some of the coolest guys in Christian music. We’re really excited about going out on tour with them.
Jennifer: What do you miss most when you’re out on tour?
Adam: Family. The guys miss their girlfriends. I miss getting to hang out with all my friends, playing pick-up games of basketball and football -- normal everyday stuff that you take for granted. You miss your own bed too.
Jennifer: Tell me about how you got to this point.
Adam: We started leading worship for the youth group at Mountain Ridge Baptist Church in Glendale [Arizona]. As the youth group grew, our band grew. We started playing shows around Phoenix and branched out to the rest of Arizona, then Southern California. We got a big break when we opened for By the Tree in Tuscon. Then we decided to record a CD in Nashville, and then we toured with By the Tree. That made us decide we want to do this full time.
Jennifer: How did you survive in those early years?
Adam: I don’t know. We all had jobs. I lead worship in a church. Jordan and Taylor painted houses and church. Cody makes racing tires and works in a steel shop. He still works there when we’re home. Whatever it takes. When you’re off tour for a couple of weeks, you gotta make ends meet.
Jennifer: What in the world does Stellar Kart mean?
Adam: That is the question. (laughs) We were out in California doing a camp for a bunch of kids. We were in a little theme park, and we were racing go-carts. We thought, hey, cart is a cool word. We were thinking of random words to go with it, and we came up with stellar. Stellar Kart. That is so unique it has to be a band name.
Jennifer: So there’s no lofty, spiritual meaning to it?
Adam: No, I could probably make up something but I don’t even bother.
Jennifer: Well, it works.
Adam: It’s a name. We’ll let the music speak for itself.
Jennifer: What’s a typical show like?
Adam: It’s pretty crazy from start to finish. We have a couple songs that let the kids breathe and rest. Most of the time they’re jumping, running, and screaming. It’s pretty fun.
Jennifer: All Gas. No Brake coming out February 15th. Are you ready? Are you nervous?
Adam: We’re so ready for it. It’s our first real CD, and we’re almost a real band. We can’t wait.
Jennifer: The first single, “Spending Time,” is about setting aside quality time with God. How can young people get into this in the midst of school, football practice, boys, girls, etc.?
Adam: It’s just a decision that you have to make on your own. No one can force you. It just clicks. It clicked with me around 19 years old. The no. 1 reason that kids miss it is that they don’t spend any time with God or in the Word. That’s real important to us. It’s the glue that keeps us together on the road.
Jennifer: Do you get to spend a lot of time in prayer and in Scripture on the road?
Adam: It’s nice because we get a lot of alone time. You’re only on stage for maybe an hour or two per day. And then the rest of the time you’re setting up or sitting in a hotel room. There’s plenty of time. You have to make time to do it.
Jennifer: I love some of the other themes running through this album. Songs like “Life is Good” and “Finish Last” are looking towards the eternal. Do you think the youth get that concept?
Adam: I think some of them definitely do. Kids are growing up so much faster. They can understand heaven and eternity. It’s very relevant, and I think they want it. It opens up their mind.
Jennifer: What advice would you give young people who want to be about Christ in their schools but are afraid they’re the only ones?
Adam: Just try to make an impact on your little circle of friends. All of us have friends that aren’t Christians. Don’t force anything on anybody but don’t shy away from anything. Live your life the way God wants you to live it, and people will ask questions. It’s happened to me. I’ve got friends who, every now and then, get to a point where they ask, ‘Dude, why are you always happy? Why does nothing go wrong with you?’ I say, ‘Stuff happens to me all the time.’ But they say, ‘No, it’s not the same. Why does good stuff always happen to you?’ Boom. An opportunity to share. You just say what you believe. 'Take it or throw it right back but here’s what I feel. This is why I do the things I do.'
Jennifer: And you can still have fun with it.
Adam: You bet. You can still live life and it’s even more fun.
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