In the mid-1990's, Sin Embargo rose up to near the top of the heap in the Lapeer & Flint, Michigan area's local underground rock circles by sharing the stage with numerous local bands at many live local music shows and releasing unique original material. From 1992 - 1995, while countless other local bands came and went, Sin Embargo was a mainstay at Lapeer's then-all-ages club "The Portal". Other appearances at local music venues such as Flint's Capitol Theatre & Flint Local 432, plus events like Mike Boyd's first couple of Omnium Gatherum local music festivals (1993 & 1994) and July 1994's Band Daze festival at Lapeer's Rowden Park helped solidify Sin Embargo's position. Appearances on the Lapeer radio station 103.1 FM (it's changed names, call letters, and formats at least 3 times since then!) also sparked interest in the band as some of its self-produced album releases got airplay. Over the following few years, beginning in 1995, Sin Embargo started to spread out of the Lapeer/Flint music scene and into other areas of Michigan such as Mt. Pleasant, Ypsilanti, Bay City, Lansing, Owosso, Saginaw, metro Detroit, Ann Arbor, Kalamazoo, and Grand Rapids. Sin Embargo was also a well-known member of the Mt. Pleasant music scene from 1996 - 2000 while some band members attended Central Michigan University. These days, Sin Embargo plays from time to time in the Ypsilanti/Ann Arbor area, with a few other random appearances in lower Michigan here and there.Back to the Sin Embargo Home Page.
Sin Embargo was formed in Lapeer, Michigan in the summer of 1992. Guitarist Kyle Kipp , finishing up his freshman year at Lapeer West High School, decided to join forces with classmate and fledgling guitarist Justin Pasquale . Not knowing of any other available bass players at the time, Kyle & Justin tapped Kyle's older brother Eric Kipp to join the band in July of 1992. Eric had just graduated from Lapeer West High School and had only been playing bass for about a year. Throughout the fall of 1992, Kyle, Justin & Eric tried to find a drummer, but were unsuccessful so they pressed ahead with writing and practicing cover songs and originals in the Kipp household after school and on weekends. In October 1992, Sin Embargo managed to "borrow" then-Beatnik Mecca member Bryce Burasinski to be Sin Embargo's first drummer. Justin grew frustrated with the direction of the band (Justin wanted to play more heavy metal, Kyle & Eric did not) and quit on October 25, 1992, before the group had ever played live. Kyle and Eric finally got their first gig booked and did not want to cancel it, so they forged ahead by getting Kyle's (and Justin's) classmate Jason Kilburn to take over for Justin on rhythm guitar. Seizing an opportunity, Kyle, Eric, Jason & Bryce made an unscheduled debut appearance at Lapeer's Club 42-5 (the precursor to "The Portal") teen center on November 6, 1992, since the originally scheduled band had run out of songs to play. Sin Embargo then made their official live debut with the same line-up the following week (November 13, 1992) at Club 42-5. With the band now having a couple of live gigs under their belts, they continued working on more new originals and cover songs and booking a few more gigs in Lapeer.
In early January 1993, Bryce stated that he was no longer able to play drums for Sin Embargo due to his increasing commitments with Beatnik Mecca. Respected local drummer Chad Van Brocklin (who had gone on to play in Rev. Right-Time & the 1st Cuzins of Funk, among others) ended up sitting in on drums for Sin Embargo at their January 22, 1993 gig at Club 42-5. In late January 1993, Kyle & Jason's classmate Derrick Teal was brought on-board as Sin Embargo's new drummer. Although Derrick was technically in the band until October 1993, he only played three live shows (out of the six that were performed during that time), with Beatnik Mecca member Mike Boyd filling in on drums for the rest. Jason Kilburn was kicked out of the band in April 1993, and Kyle & Eric continued to work with Derrick Teal on more Sin Embargo originals and cover songs throughout that spring and summer. In August & September 1993, Sin Embargo worked with Mike Boyd on recording their debut album Nevertheless. Mike Boyd took over for Derrick Teal with drumming on the Nevertheless sessions, as well as a couple of gigs that fall. Miraculously, at Sin Embargo's November 5, 1993 gig at Club 42-5, Kyle & Eric stumbled upon drummer Jason Hofer. This happened because Sin Embargo was asked to play an encore set after the other band on the bill was done playing, but Mike Boyd needed to leave to play a Beatnik Mecca show in Saginaw that night. So, Kyle asked the audience for a volunteer to sit in on drums for SE's encore that night, and Jason Hofer was the only one who came forth!
Hofer officially joined Sin Embargo the following week and stayed in the band until January 1997, when he was preparing to get married and move out of the Lapeer area. During Hofer's tenure, Sin Embargo played about 70 gigs throughout southeastern Michigan and recorded and released the Nevertheless (Fixed & Remixed) album in 1994, the Underneath album in 1995, and the Super Fugue CD (eventually released in 1998). In the fall of 1996, Kyle found Hofer's successor, Ed Stark , while attending Central Michigan University. Ed initially took over for Hofer in January 1997, but decided to leave the group in December of that year to move out of state. Drummer Chad Calton joined the band in February 1998 and played about 20 gigs to promote the newly released Super Fugue CD, before he quit in March of 1999. Luckily, Ed Stark had since returned to Michigan and decided to rejoin Sin Embargo right after Chad left, which allowed the band to play many more gigs throughout lower Michigan between 1999 - 2003, as well as write some more new material. From 1998 to 2001, Sin Embargo appeared on some local radio music shows (WMHW-FM Mt. Pleasant; WRXF-FM Lapeer), as well as some Central Michigan University student film soundtracks, and a few different compilation albums produced by various local indie record labels. In 2002, Sin Embargo recorded and released its latest CD titled Blowin' Mud, a "split" CD with Kyle & Eric's short-lived side project Dirty Money . In August 2003, Ed Stark left Sin Embargo to pursue other interests.
Upon the demise of Dirty Money in early 2003 (and Sin Embargo on a hiatus at the time), Kyle soldiered on with his own solo act KK Dirty Money by playing mellow and obscure country, blues & surf tunes along with a few remnant Dirty Money originals and some Sin Embargo numbers. After working with a small rotating roster of accompanying musicians for a few months (informally referred to as "Las Drogas"), KKDM solidified his lineup as a duo named KK Dirty Money & Las Drogas by adding drummer Nevada Parsons in late 2003. With Nevada settled into her role of drumming with KKDM, it seemed only natural to have her work with both Kyle & Eric in Sin Embargo as well. In February 2004, Nevada joined the Sin Embargo line-up as the band's first female member (as well as its youngest) in its 12+ year history. In May 2005, Kyle & Nevada decided to shorten their group's name to simply " Las Drogas ". However, in August 2005, Kyle & Nevada mutually decided to part ways, leaving Sin Embargo (and Las Drogas) without a drummer once again.
While "adult responsibilities" have increasingly cut into band activities in the recent past, Kyle & Eric (regardless of who's drumming!) have still managed to get out and play Sin Embargo shows every so often throughout lower Michigan, and are still tinkering around with some new material here and there. Kyle was playing more frequently with Las Drogas, but both bands ended up coming to coexist together (even doing some "hybrid" shows together throughout 2005) by playing overlapping set lists of Sin Embargo songs, old Dirty Money tunes, plus obscure blues/rock/surf covers from their common repertoires - albeit with different styles: Sin Embargo being more full-on, uptempo power-trio rawk, and Las Drogas keeping it more mellow and stripped down with just drums and a gritty baritone guitar. By May 2006, Kyle commissioned yet another band out of the ashes of Las Drogas named "The 77s", which still drew from the same pool of Sin Embargo/Dirty Money/Las Drogas material, as well as created new music. This was necessitated primarily with Eric taking a "paternal hiatus" from music for several months while he and his wife Amy began raising their daughter Kayla in March 2006.
During the latter half of 2006 and all of 2007, Kyle spent most of his time playing live & recording with The 77s. In September 2007, Kyle also began playing bass for the established Detroit area band "the Sunday Painters ". In the summer of 2008, Kyle & Eric began tossing around the idea of re-activating Sin Embargo with Ed Stark in a limited capacity since Kyle was busy with his other bands. Since 2008, Kyle, Eric & Ed have attempted to get together at least once a year (usually during the summer) to jam on various Sin Embargo/Dirty Money songs and cover tunes to play at the annual family reunion of Eric & Kyle's relatives known as "Sherylpalooza" in Harper Woods, MI. During this time, Kyle also became busier performing and recording with his other bands "the Devil Elvis Show" & "Las Drogas". From February 2012 to October 2013, Ed played drums in the Rochester-based honky-tonk band "Babe Miller & the 10-4's", where Ed appeared on two releases. On January 12, 2013, a public Sin Embargo "reunion" finally occurred at Flint Local 432, with Las Drogas drummer/Devil Elvis singer Chris "Chops" O'Droski and Ed Stark sharing drumming duties. Kyle, Eric & Ed have gotten together on and off to perform some more Sin Embargo gigs since then. Kyle remained busy with "the Devil Elvis Show" until September 2015, when he left that band and began playing guitar with another established Ypsilanti-based group named "Black Jake & the Carnies " a few weeks later. Either way, as Sin Embargo enters its 25th year of existence, it's all about "the rawk", so keep checking the " upcoming shows " page for future appearances of Sin Embargo near you !
Last modified on March 12, 2017.
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