|Us :: "The Making of the Monster"
For all practical purposes, Monsterus began
in 1988, when Ron set out to assemble a band that would "change the world." "My intent was to put together what seemed, at the time, to be a paradox;
a band of committed Christians that were rock & role-model material that could hold their own in the mainstream. I had no idea of just how hard that would actually
be," Ron says, "But I never gave up." Simultaneously, some 3,000 miles away in Canada, Mars would begin full-time touring with a road act and Don would
start an all original Christian band, based in New Orleans.
Back in the U.S., after three years exhausting
his local and regional music scenes, Ron decides a change of scenery might help in his vision quest, so off to Hollywood he goes. With his sights set on relocating,
and joining the mass exodus of musicians already crammed into the 'city of angels', Ron spends several weeks out west networking and deciding his next move. Upon
his return, Ron contacts an independent talent scout out of Orlando (instrumental in helping many signed bands locate new members) to aid him in his now international
search for other musicians. After weeks of reviewing an unbelievable database of the best "Christian" musicians on the planet, Ron assembles an audition
brochure/direct mail campaign, spelling out the specifics of what he is looking for, and mails it to over 1,000 prospective guitarists, vocalists and industry honchos.
What was to follow were months of sorting through audition packages and holding cattle-call auditions. It was now, three years into it, when the stars would align,
and unbeknownst to anyone the Monsterus embryo would be conceived.
Meanwhile, in the Great White North, Mars was
getting a demo together, after just coming off a grueling 3 years on the Canadian Club Circuit. Fate, they say, had Ron's brochure and Mars' demo on guitar guru,
Mike Varney's (president of Shrapnel Records) desk around the same time. Varney called Ron and said his latest guitarist discovery, Mars, was just the guy he was
looking for and to go pick up the latest issue of Guitar Player magazine in which Mars was being featured. "Varney thought together we could have some serious
potential," Mars says, "And he was right." However, due to distance and circumstances beyond their control, the reality of hooking up seemed virtually
impossible. For the next 2-1/2 years Ron would remain in contact with Mars while he completed 3 more demos. By now however, one of 999 other audition brochures had
found its way on to yet another desk, that of Doug Van Pelt (Founder of HM Magazine). "Doug called me and said he had just received this package from an almost
'to good to be true' guitar player out of New Orleans named Don Williams he thought I should check out," Ron recalls, "He said this guy seemed to have it
Placing the call to Don, Ron instantly felt
a connection and asked Don to fly up and check out this musical situation. Upon Don's arrival, he also felt the same connection and knowing that this was where he
was meant to be, yet no future plans were established do in part to some upcoming pre-scheduled auditions Ron had already committed to. Don returned to New Orleans
and shortly thereafter, Ron received a call from Don saying "If you want me, I've got to come now". Don packed all his belongings and began the trek north
arriving in November of '92. Don moved into Ron's house and the 2 began building a 400 sq. ft. pre-production studio, still used by Monsterus today. With similar
interests a lifelong friendship begins. "Our musical relationship has always been secondary" Don says, "it's never been the unifying thing." However,
the two would split paths to pursue different musical interests yet remained friends, and worked together on occasion.
In February of '95 through a series of events
too numerous to list, Mars becomes the second mainstay in Monsterus and in May relocates to the U.S.. Together the two begin laying the groundwork for what would
literally become Monsterus. By this time, Ron and Mars had become close friends with Don and decided it's time to make the long anticipated call to see if he might
be interested in stepping in as the bass player for Monsterus. "I always knew I'd wind up back in the band," Don said, "We were all close friends,
we all attend the church where Ron's Dad is pastor...it just made sense. You knew once we got together this is what God had intended from the beginning." Come
February of 2000, Don becomes the third and final member of the now primed and growing Monsterus. Together Monsterus stands at the threshold of taking their "Spooky-Mood"
music to the masses.
"The direction of Monsterus is definitely gonna turn some heads." Ron says, "but isn't that what rock n' roll is all about? Making a statement? Some
people might think we have attitudes, but I can't help but think that's a good thing." Refusing to compromise, be pigeon-holed or follow trends...Monsterus is
truly unique in a music world gone mad!