|Guilty As Charged|
Darkstar was formed by Toronto’s Timothy Chipman on guitars and keyboards with brothers James Paul and Peter Cassar on bass and drums. They played the local bar scene for a couple of years while honing their hard rock act and writing some material.
In 1977 while playing in New York a chance meeting with songwriter Al Munson led to them recording his song written with Bobby Ray Appelberry, “Holy Roller” – not the Nazareth tune – on Lifesongs Records. It went nowhere and did nothing, and they went home and carried on.
They formed their own Ariel Records in ’78 and released their debut album, INTO THE HEARTLAND that summer. “Hit and Run Lover” and the title track were relesaed as singles and indicative of the band’s heavy beat, but neither made a chart impression.
Oddly, they changed their name to The Foxrun Band for their next record, YOU’RE INVITED in early ’79. Recorded at Kinck Sound in Toronto, it was much the same as their first record musically. But tried to expand their sound, Margo Davidson (later of Parachute Club was brought in on sax and bg vocals. Again written predominantly by Chipman, it featured the title track b/w “Do It In The Dark,” as well as “Magical Gir,” “Summer Moon,” and “Living In Toronto.”
A year later and they were back as Darkstar, releasing ESCAPE ROUTINES in 1980. The sound was more mainstream, and along with the somewhat succesful single, “Postcard From Jamaica,” it was followed by “Won’t Be Disappointed” and “Wondering Who.”
They were back as The Foxrun Band for the MYSTERY NEWS in late ’81. It again featured Margo Davidson, and the title track b/w “Embrace” was released as a single. The trio resurfaced in ’84 for their final offering, the single “River of Tears.”
The Cassar brothers got out of recording all together but continued working with other bands with Ariel – including Joey Barnett, Essence, and Diane Page, among others. Chipman meanwhile also continued recorded for Ariel, forming Sierra Blue and The Play throughout the ’80s, each good for a pair of singles.