The Verve Pipe Biography
With sales of 3 million albums worldwide, The Verve Pipe became the Great Lakes State's most successful stories in the Alternative-Rock movement of the '90s. Formed in East Lansing, Michigan USA, by singer + songwriter Brian Vander Ark, guitarist Brian Stout, frontman's brother Brad Vander Ark on bass and drummer Donny Brown, the quartet put out an independent album, "I've Suffered A Head Injury", in the fall of 1992.
Released in 1993, "Pop Smear", was the first proper studio album for The Verve Pipe; the CD marked the recording debut of new guitarist A.J. Dunning, who replaced Stout and keyboardist Doug Corella. Now as a five-piece, the group gradually developed a steady following through constant gigging and in 1995 they scored a deal with RCA Records.
In March 1996 the band released its major-label debut, "Villains"; the first single, "Cup Of Tea", reached #35 on The Mainstream Rock chart while its follow-up, "Photograph", started to climb The Modern Rock Tracks to eventually settle at #6. But it was "The Freshmen" that became a huge smash, hitting #5 on The Billboard Hot 100, #1 on The Modern Rock Tracks and #9 on The Mainstream Rock list. "Villains" peaked at #24 on The Billboard Top 200 Albums chart and received a platinum certification by the RIAA for more than one million copies shipped to stores. The final single, the disc's title-track, eventually reached #22 on The Modern Rock chart and #24 on The Mainstream Rock Tracks in the late summer of 1997, one and a half year after the album's release.
July 1999 saw the Michigan alt-rockers unleash their eponymous album. Despite it contained the single "Hero", which crested at #17 on The Modern Rock chart, as well as the seductive tune "Kiss Me Idle", "The Verve Pipe" failed to rise above #158 on The Billboard Top 200 Albums listing.
The Verve Pipe issued another album, "Underneath", in September 2001, which notched only one Adult Top 40 radio hit, "Never Let You Down", before disappearing.
By 2009 The Verve Pipe reunited to record the kids' CD "A Family Album" and followed it up with another family album, "Are We There Yet?", in mid-2013.
On June 17, 2014, The Verve Pipe will release its first Rock album, "Overboard", since 2001's "Underneath". The current line-up features Brian Vander Ark, lead guitarist Lou Musa, keyboardist Randy Sly, harmonica player Craig Griffith, bassist Andy Reed and long-time drummer Donny Brown.