meet the band
Darla “Diva D” – Lead Vocals
Darla began singing professionally in 1999 as the Wynonna half of a Judds Tribute act. In 2000, along with Candy L as mom Naomi, she appeared on the dick clark tv show “Your Big Break”. Since then she’s shared the stage with some of Canada’s top tribute artists, and toured with acclaimed tribute shows, Legends of Rock N Roll and Legends Alive! performing at the Merritt Mountain Music Festival, Calgary Stampede, and in Lady Lakes, Florida.
While working with the BC public service, Darla created and produced an annual tribute show featuring a cast and crew comprised of only BC government employees. From 2002-2009, PopStars! contributed over $51,000 to local community charities.
After Darla’s first band, DC Express disbanded in 2004, she reached out to guitarist Karen with the idea of forming a new country band, which eventually became, Chick Wagon Band.
Karen – Lead Guitar / Vocals
Karen’s guitar obsession began at just 11 years old and hasn’t wavered. Musical talent paired with sheer determination led to extensive performance experience for this Powell River native. From live radio and TV, to intimate coffee houses, folk clubs, and international music festivals, Karen has done it all!
As a member of several Victoria-area bands, she’s played multiple genres including, blues, bluegrass, folk, acoustic roots, and classic rock. In the mid-90s, Karen’s duo Fischer & Lee, often described as ‘the Indigo Girls meets the Carter Family’, shared the marquis with Saltspring Island’s own, Valdy, who also produced their 1998 CD, Rise. It was early 2004 when Karen boarded the Chick Wagon adding her lead guitar chops and vocals to the band’s distinct sound.
Marty “Doc” – Bass
Doc taught himself to play six- and twelve-string guitar “many years ago”, in another life in Calgary. Gordon Lightfoot was his favourite. After his Stampeders finally won a Grey Cup, he blew the dust off his cow-town roots and moved to Victoria. Once here, he auditioned for [and landed] a spot in his first band, Pagan Blue, fronted by Bill Zaalberg of “Brandy” fame.
Since then, he’s played with groups including Foot Patter, Shades of Blue, Take 3, Diamond Jack and Redwood. For the last few years, he has been playing both bass and six-string guitar with Lady and the Tramps, featuring vintage country, and contemporary rock, and continues to perform solo, in ad hoc groups and open mics.
Patrick “Dusty” – Drums
Starting in his early teens, Patrick studied, taught, and played drums in southern Ontario. During those years he played diverse musical styles ranging from George Zepp’s Hungarian Polka Band, to rock/blues band, Labrynth covering tunes by Paul McCartney’s Jets and the Allman Brothers, followed by the spiritually-based folk/rock band, Massebah. His drumming talent helped nicely to fund his way through high school and a University degree.
Patrick then took a brief hiatus from drumming to focus on his day job and, what was most important to him, raising a family. After settling in Victoria, he resumed drumming as a long-term member of local band, Shades of Blue. In 2015, Patrick earned the nickname “Dusty” when he joined the Chick Wagon Band. He loves to be asked how he got that nickname, as well as the comradery of the band members, and playing quality music that makes people dance!