When drummer Richard Harris moved from California to Holland, Michigan in 1995 and met singer-guitarist Tim Obbink, the two decided to combine their musical talents and began performing together.
Before Harris returned to California the next year, he introduced Obbink to percussionist Jeremy Mokma. Mokma joined Obbink in his weekly performances at Backstreet Restaurant and Brewpub.
In January 1999, Harris returned to Michigan and rejoined Obbink and Mokma. The three began thinking of turning their three-man act into a full band.