Rose Hill Drive

Nov 102004
Authors: Rob Bombard

In a local music scene dominated by dime-a-dozen jam bands and

an even more overcrowded emo-punk scene, enters Rose Hill Drive, a

talented three-piece rock band looking to breathe new life into a

style of rock ‘n’ roll that is gone but certainly not


Hailing from Boulder, the band is two parts Sproul brothers,

Jake and Dan and one part childhood friend, Nate Barnes. Rose Hill

Drive is best described as a power trio that echoes a raw classic

rock sound, fusing the styles of ’60s British blues with hints of

modern rock and pop, creating an explosive dynamic evident in their

music and at their live shows.

“Our roots are definitely in classic rock. That’s the music we

grew up on, but I think our sound is modern,” said Barnes, the


Guitarist Dan Sproul, provides the foundation for the band’s

sound with his loud, explosive interpretation of the blues. Dan’s

tight song structure and penchant for writing catchy guitar riffs

are the driving force behind the band’s identity. Dan’s

face-melting, wah-infected solos and no-frills approach to rock ‘n’

roll has become the staple of their live shows and is sure to knock

listeners back a few decades to the days of Led Zeppelin and


Barnes provides the backbone for Rose Hill Drive’s power-packed

live shows and larger-than-life sound. With a hard-driving, loud,

oftentimes chaotic style, Barnes has earned the nickname Baby

Bonham, alluding to his similarities to the late Zeppelin drummer

John Bonham. Lead singer and bassist, Jake Sproul, is the voice and

spirit of the band giving Rose Hill Drive an undeniable stage

presence and swagger.

Like a veteran frontman, Jake commands the audience with his

infectious vocals and groove-laden bass lines that provide the

perfect backdrop for his brother’s creative guitar solos. Jake’s

voice complements the band’s sound and gives Rose Hill Drive’s

gritty, hard-rock style a dose of pop sensibility.

The buzz surrounding the band began in their hometown of Boulder

where word of mouth has multiplied the fan base with every live

show. In the span of a little over two years, Rose Hill Drive has

gone from entering local battle of the band competitions to selling

out two shows at the Fox Theater in Boulder, playing at Red Rocks

Amphitheatre in Morrison, opening for acts such as Big Head Todd

and the Monsters, Chris Robinson and the New Earth Mud and most

recently touring with ’80s rock icons, Van Halen.

Needless to say, the band has had a busy year.

“The past few years have been a roller coaster for us,” Barnes

said. “We’ve gone from practicing every day after school in our

basement to playing in front of 4,000-plus people in huge arenas.

We’ve been very fortunate to get with the right people who give us

these types of opportunities. It’s been a really great learning

experience for us.”

This Friday the band will be making the trip north to headline a

show at the Aggie Theatre, 204 S. College Ave., with opening acts

The Jordan Moretti Band and Virginia Sisters. Fresh off their

second sold-out show, expect to see a high-energy performance from

an up and coming rock band with a lot of promise.

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