H.E.A.R. Honors Darktown Saints
The Darktown Saints are four talented musicians who use a unique arrangement of
instruments and put on powerful, raw, live performances. With drums, piano,
Chapman Stick, and Viper violin, the group is about the only commercial rock
band without a guitar or electric bass, but one would not immediately notice
the difference listening to their music.
On October 22, 1999, young teenagers Drew De Four (piano), his brother Mark (bass), Jay Golden (guitar), and Phil Bossenberger (drums) formed a group called Amadeus. They went on to perform over a hundred shows across Michigan over the next four years. Meanwhile, Aaron Wolf was holed-up in his home studio finishing his third album of original music (with MIDI keyboards, classical guitar, Chapman Stick, and vocals). Drew met Aaron while studying music at Eastern Michigan University in 2001 and through a mutual friend they formed a Barbershop Quartet.
In the spring of 2003, Amadeus decided to break up for an indefinite amount of time and Drew asked Aaron to play Stick in a new band. Jay was interested and Phil was the likely drummer. Since Jay was also a violinist, Aaron thought he should focus on violin exclusively because it is unique in Rock and Roll and adds missing elements to a Stick/Piano band. Jay found the ideal rock violin: a Mark Wood fretted 6-string Viper electric. It covers the full range of a guitar, with the dynamic control of a violin. Drew took on the responsibility of lead vocals, being the most experienced with his instrument otherwise.
However, after lots of discussion through the summer, little had materialized, and Amadeus considered a reunion. Then, in October of 2003, tragedy took the life of Drew's brother, bandmate, and best friend Mark De Four, as well as all hope of Amadeus ever playing together again.
After Mark's death, Drew felt driven to keep moving on with life as well as music, so he made plans to work at a recording studio in Binghamton, NY. There, he had discovered a team of producers that seemed to know how to get to the next level in the music industry. Drew, Jay, Phil, and Aaron played a few shows in 2004 before moving to the studio in late April to spend over 4 months working on their debut album: "This." In the studio, the band also came up with the name "Darktown Saints" meaning: those who attempt to bring compassion to a world full of fear and hatred.
The band's style and sound are unique, but definitely rock. "This" is a good demonstration of the band's potential and their unparalleled sound. As an unsigned, ambitious band, DtS works hard to bring their musical creativity and positive energy to the world through albums and live performances.