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Pray for the Soul of Betty
Origin New York City
Genres Post-grunge Hard rock
Years active 20032006
Labels Baby Julius Productions/Koch Records
Website www.myspace.com/prayforthesoulofbetty

Pray for the Soul of Betty (often known by the acronym, "PFTSOB") was a hard rock band from New York City. The band consisted of Michael Hamboussi (drums), João Joya (guitar) and Taylor, C.R. (bass). On March 20, 2006, lead vocalist Constantine Maroulis announced his departure on the band's official message board, and on May 13, 2006, drummer Hamboussi posted in his MySpace blog that PFTSOB had officially disbanded.

Contents

Biographies

 
Constantine Maroulis (joined 2003, disbanded 2006) : (singer, songwriter, lyricist, producer)
Maroulis entered the band in 2003 after beating over 150 singers who auditioned.
 
Craig Taylor (aka Taylor, C.R. or Taylor Pala) (joined 2003) : (bassist, songwriter, lyricist, producer)
Taylor co-founded the band in 2003 with Joya and Hamboussi.
 
João Salomao (aka Joao Joya) (joined 2003) : (guitar, songwriter, composer, producer)
 
Michael Hamboussi (aka Hamboussi) (joined 2003) : (drummer, songwriter, composer, producer)

History

Hamboussi and Joya worked as a drummer-guitarist duo in small bands before Hamboussi notified Taylor to form a group. Maroulis was added as the lead vocalist in 2003 after over 150 auditions. When creating songs, Taylor and Maroulis contribute the lyrics, while Hamboussi and Joya contribute the melodies. When asked about the origin of its name, band members answer that they named themselves after the death of their bassist's aunt, though Betty can refer to anyone who is in need of support.

The band toured heavily around the United States and a few other countries (including Japan), simultaneously with a 2003-2004 traveling production of the play Rent, in which Maroulis played Roger Davis.

The band rose to national attention when Maroulis auditioned for, and subsequently made it to the Final 6 of, the popular television show American Idol. His audition clip showed him "quitting" the band (a claim he denies), and also featured the displeasure of one of his fellow bandmates (the rest supported him). Maroulis became one of the last six contestants on the American Idol television show and was never ranked in the bottom three before his elimination. He was asked to leave ahead of the other rocker of the season, Bo Bice, to the chagrin of his many fans. However, since the American Idol run, the band has performed in larger more notable venues on the Sunset Strip.

In the spring of 2005, they inked a distribution deal with Koch Records, who released a re-engineered version of their eponymous debut on May 10, 2005. The tracks were recorded in 2003 and 2004.

In January 2006, the band completed a national tour beginning in San Diego and ending in Philadelphia. That March, Maroulis announced that he would be officially leaving Pray for the Soul of Betty to pursue solo projects.

Style and culture

The band cites many artists and bands as influences: Audioslave, Velvet Revolver, Incubus, Rage Against the Machine, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Led Zeppelin, Jimi Hendrix and Neil Young. The band has also been compared to Black Sabbath and Nirvana.

Reviews and public reaction

The band has received mixed reviews throughout the early 21st century. The increased national attention after American Idol had transformed the band from non-notable garage band to public figures. One of the most common is comparing the distinction between Maroulis's softer style as seen on television with the edgier hardcore antics of the band as a whole in their live shows.

Discography

Quotes

  • "A mix of visceral indie-rock songs and souped-up tunes with the feel of old-school Black Sabbath." —The Hartford Courant
  • "The long solos are rather intoxicating, and there’s an old-fashioned professionalism to the endeavor." —New Haven Advocate

See also

External links








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