Us and Wilbur

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Us and Wilbur play a unique brand of distinctly Canadian, folk-influenced rock music. Originally formed in Peterborough in 1993, the three-piece band established a wide fan base across Southern Ontario…
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Us and Wilbur play a unique brand of distinctly Canadian, folk-influenced rock music. Originally formed in Peterborough in 1993, the three-piece band established a wide fan base across Southern Ontario in the next three years. The trio recorded and released their first album, Lost and Found, independently. They moved from Peterborough and continued to play together in Guelph, where the bands' founders, Jeff Cowling (guitars, vocals), Michael Johnston (lead vocals, keyboards), and John Rosefield (drums, vocals) met Devin Armstrong (bass, vocals). Armstrong joined the band as a permanent member and the distinctive Wilbur sound was born. Johnston is the principal songwriter in the band, sometimes collaborating with not only his fellow bandmembers but with longtime Wilbur friends, Dave Tough and Graydon Miles. After opening for fellow Canuck luminaries Barenaked Ladies, Rheostatics, and Bob Wiseman, Us and Wilbur headlined their first cross-Canada tour, playing 15 shows over 21 days in August of 1998. Their second full-length release, Through These Walls, was recorded at the Gas Station Studios in Toronto with Ron Sexsmith and Rheostatics drummer and producer Don Kerr, and was released in the fall of 1998. Through These Walls reflected the band's progression from their acoustic roots as a trio to the fuller, richer sound they'd developed since the addition of Armstrong. Shortly after the album was released, the band relocated to Toronto and played many live shows in various venues around town, as well as breaking new ground with shows in Windsor, Hamilton, and other towns in Ontario.