Before Champ de Mars
Tis true. Before Champ de Mars there were several other incarnations of this band, with several other records out. Here’s a quick recap with keys to their albums.
David Emerick, the nom de guerre these days for the band's main songwriter, released three solo discs after moving from California to Washington DC., Northern California, Virginia, and Maryland. These discs briefly entertained a nuts notion that he'd record an album themed around every state in the union. Thank God that fantasy passed. The discs ranged from folk, country, and alt-guitar-tuned indie rock. The timing of these discs also coincided with the construction of Navigator Studios, the band's soon to be independent home recording studio in Alexandria, Va. Very briefly a band Zero Day emerged which performed one wonderful gig on the rooftop of the Beacon hotel in Washington, D.C.
Drums: Matt Pendleton
Bass: Tony Asbestos
Guitar: Dave Carl
Bellstar released two wonderful records, Navigator, and Divisadero. The band played numerous live shows between 1999 and 2006 in the Sacramento, San Francisco music scene. The record Navigator received some local high praise and 'How to be a Foreign Journalist' was used in Rich York's independent film 'Reverb.'
In 2004 the band started work on the follow up album 'Divisadero' - which under some lineup changes, was released under the previous band name 'The Said,' however - was really a Bellstar record.
Bass: Ken Rhodes
Drums: Randy Teresi
The Said also released two wonderful records, These Varied Carols and the rugged Manowar. The band came out of the college scene at UC Davis and began taking on shows in Northern California, highlighting a couple summer festivals in Yolo County. Their first album featured Grub Dog Mitchell on drums and guest appearance by Bill Scholer on guitar on 'Cherokee Kyle.' The band did get some local flack for their song 'Yellow Hangman Friday Night' which torpedoed some local radio disc jockeys.