"...Hold onto your dreams never let them go, until you make it on your own. And the best is yet to come..."* More than a simple song lyric, the above phrase captures the philosophy of CHARACTER. Strong, original lyrics combined with compelling melodies make this Cincinnati-based quartet a welcome change to today's bands. Defining categorization is difficult, but CHARACTER's drive gives the music a melodic and aggressive sound that could be compared to Queensryche, Dream Theater, Stryper, Dokken, or T.N.T. The high quality of musicianship makes CHARACTER a favorite for real music fans. CHARACTER was originally formed several years ago by Chris Dunnett and a drummer friend of his Jim Russell. The band recorded a 5-song demo tape titled "Running For Success" which quickly gained some record label interest. The other members of CHARACTER, however, wanted to pursue other ventures. CHARACTER disbanded and Chris Dunnett joined The Seventh Seal. Although The Seventh Seal is still active and working on new material, Chris felt the time was right for CHARACTER to reappear when he met drummer and co-founding member, Brian Hurst. Together they hooked up with bassist, Curt Hanks and vocalist, Lee Foster. Based on Chris' friendship with Lillian Axe guitarist, Stevie Blaze, and Stevie's love for Chris' previous work, he gladly helped CHARACTER in the studio with the recording of their debut self-titled EP. Stevie co-produced the song "I Am Willing To Do", which quickly became a favorite of Mad Max Hammer's show on the national Z-Rock Network. He loved the song so much it was featured as his "Most Maximum Song Of The Week." Stevie also lent his vocal talents to the back-ups on that song. CHARACTER's second release "Checkmate", which is a 6-song EP, features a song that was written by Stevie Blaze for Lillian Axe which was never on an album titled "Last Goodbye." ** This release welcomes new bassist, Derrik Hughes and vocalist, Dan Ahrman. Dan also lends his writing talents to Chris' and Brian's. Shortly before the release of "Checkmate", Lee and the band decided to mutually part ways. Shortly thereafter, Curt moved to Florida. CHARACTER is currently busy writing new material and gaining a following overseas--mainly in England, Germany, and Japan. In addition, Chris is always busy with numerous projects, including writing some guitar method books andworking on his recording studio, The Dojo. Combining each member's individual strengths into a well-balanced machine was almost second nature. Each has his input, and there are no over-inflated egos. These guys are genuine, both in their love of music and in their dedication to the craft. Not to mention, they are easy-going and give live performances more personality than most. CHARACTER is a step beyond the average and a welcome change to the sound-alike, look-alike scene.