Drums, Vocals, Percussion, Discipline, Mixology
David Pseja is a NY-NJ native who grew up surrounded by music. His father's eclectic record collection and New York oldies radio started a lifelong fascination with The Beatles and sixties rock. This later blossomed into a love for music of all eras and genres, nurtured by in-depth study at the University of Billboard and the Columbia record-then-tape-then-CD Club. Although David taught himself to pick out tunes on the piano at an early age, he was a late-bloomer with regards to making music.
College proved to be the catalyst. His interest in the guitar - his primary method of musical expression - came about from playing around on a classmate's electric, which led to a trip to the Valparaiso pawn shop to buy his first acoustic. He later took a few drum lessons from a friend and when fate bestowed a garbage-picked kit upon the band, he was the one to fill the drum seat. Making music with best friends Doug Mensing and Rich Light came about almost accidentally, and the final piece of the puzzle was adding his brother Eric to the band. Songwriting flourished. Together, the four found that they all shared a twisted and often incongruous musical vision that was unique - and always three-steps beyond their limited musical ability.
What David lacks in talent he makes up for in heart and dogged determination. As Paul McCartney once said, "Music shouldn't be work. After all, we play music, we don't work music." David lives by this philosophy. Although perhaps not as often as he would like, he's still playing.
Guitars, Vocals, Optimism, Duct Tape, Rugged Individualism
Doug Mensing grew up in northern NJ with limited musical influences. Aside from singing in the church children's choir, older sister Kristin's piano practicing, and occasional 70s radio tunes, few notes permeated his eardrums in those early years. A (thankfully) brief foray with violin, 4 years on trombone (concert & marching band), and an intro to guitar class failed to ignite his musical passions. Then Doug took a deep dive into prog rock in high school, where he immersed himself in the soundscapes of Pink Floyd, old Genesis, Yes, Jethro Tull, and his favorite - Marillion. But still, he was not making the music.
As a freshman at Valparaiso University, Doug had the good fortune of dorming next to bandmate Rich Light, whose roommate had a $5 electric guitar. Doug strummed, picked, and noodled... and he was hooked... HARD! Within a couple months he purchased a used Cort electric guitar and practice amp... and then he began to rock. First with Rich, then with Dave, and later with Eric, Doug was writing, playing, and singing - and loving every minute of it.
While the energy (and free time) of those years has passed, Doug still makes time to get together intermittently with local friends (JimJam) for alt/folk/Americana jams and occasional solo open mics. But to this day, an annual highlight is the reunion with the guys that make CRUST so delicious.
Keyboards, Vocals, Realism, Brooding, Balladeering
Rich Light was born into a musical family - the middle of 5 kids - in the Detroit suburb of Rochester, MI. Rich took piano lessons from his own father (a classically trained pianist in his own right) for 8 years during childhood. In high school, Rich bought his first keyboard, the now legendary Casio CZ-1000. As a direct result of being the only kid in school with his own keyboard, Rich was invited to join local band SIR. Although all SIR recordings are now sadly out of print, the band did leave their mark through a series of live performances in the mid-to-late eighties Detroit market.
Shortly after leaving for college, Rich met Doug Mensing in the brewing musical cauldron that was Valparaiso University. The pair began a musical kinship that lasts to this day. After the pair joined forces with the Pseja brothers (having recently departed from the short-lived Ringling/Pseja Bros. Circus), a new band, CRUST, was born. Over 30 years and dozens of album sales later, the band is still plugging away in the new millennium. Along the way, Lighthouse Records released the hardly sought after Rich Light - Demos CD, recorded during band hiatus after the grueling Austria/Australia tour of 2013.
Unquestionably the prodigal son of his musical family, Rich continues to explore a musical path that's been since closed for repairs.
Bass, Vocals, Guitars, Beard, Cowboy Boots, Craft Beers
Eric Pseja grew up in northern New Jersey and has was immersed in music at a very young age. Through a combination of sheer luck and parenting frustration, Eric spent hours lounging in his playpen, parked in front of the stereo speakers, soaking up all the music that AM radio and CBS-FM 101.1 had to offer and setting the stage for a musical future.
Eric sang in his church choir throughout grade and middle schools, and continued to sing all throughout High School, holding down tenor and bass duties in choir, starring in musicals long before Disney made it cool, and learning enough theory along the way to make him competent enough to call himself a "musician". At this time, Eric also taught himself to play guitar, eventually picking up a Korean-made Phantom electric guitar and Gorilla amp that would follow him to college in Indiana. Much to the detriment of his fraternity house's structural integrity, Eric started playing the garbage-picked Hondo II bass guitar for his fraternity band CRUST and has continued to do so up until this day.
Concurrent to his tenure with CRUST, Eric played bass and handled lead and backing vocal duties for the late '90s NJ bar circuit band Sick Nellie, earning critical acclaim from his small group of friends and the occasional drunkard who didn't know any better. Following the demise of Sick Nellie, Eric collaborated with local NJ-based Progressive Rock band 3rDegree's Pat Kliesch to put out a solo album. This pairing would eventually lead to Eric being asked to join 3rDegree after Pat moved to California.