Dark Horse

Upcoming Events:

Jul    27      Sea Bears                public - 6:30 pm
Jul    28      Morris party           private
Aug    8      Weber Co. Fair       public - 9:00 pm
Aug  10*     Sea Bears                public - 6:30 pm
Aug  17*     Sea Bears                public - 6:30 pm
Aug  24      Summer social       private 
Aug  25      OHS Class of 68     private
Aug  27      AFCU - Lagoon      private

Sea Bears is located at 406 S Main Street, Bountiful, UT

* It is likely that a subset of the band will perform on these dates.


Judy Quist, Brad Vause, and David Carver first performed together in a dance band that was formed in 1985.  Their mainstay was classic rock peppered with country cross over.  After five years of mastering the cover set they shifted their focus to creating an original sound with original material.  Dark Horse is the group they formed for that purpose in 1990. 

Eventually, after a fifteen year stint of writing, performing, and promoting their own music, they gradually steered themselves back to their roots:  a popular set of best-loved classic rock and country cross over cover songs.  An integral part of the transition back home was the addition of Reese Barker, Northern Utah’s King of Percussion, who promptly elevated the show to new levels of professionalism. 

No one in the band, except Dave, likes to brag about how old we are.  But if experience counts for anything, we don’t mind admitting that our collective years of making music easily surpass the century mark.  You’re going to like the sound.  You’re going to like the songs.  You’re going to want to sing along and pass the entire evening with Dark Horse.

Song list

Ain't No Sunshine
And I Love Her

Baby, I Love Your Way
Bennie and the Jets
Black Velvet
Black Water
Blue Eyes

City of New Orleans
Come Together

Driving My Life Away
Do It Again
Don't It Make My Brown Eyes Blue

Every Time Two Fools Collide

Hello Again
Hey 19
Hey Jude

I Can't Tell You Why
I Don't Wanna Miss a Thing
I Only Have Eyes for You
I'll Still Be Loving You
It's My Life
It's Still Rock & Roll to Me
It's Too Late

Jailhouse Rock
Just a Kiss
Just The Way You Are

Lady in Red

Movin On
Old Time Rock & Roll
Oye Como Va

Pieces of April
Proud Mary

Radar Love
Rocket Man

Save The Last Dance
Sharp Dressed Man
Sorry Seems to Be
Sunshine of Your Love
Suzie Q

That's All
Ticket To Ride

Will You Love Me Tomorrow
Wishing You Were Here
Without You

You and I
You Belong To Me
Your Mama Don't Dance
You're No Good

Contact us

Contact Dave Carver via email at:  CarverDavidL@aol.com

Facebook page

Original music downloads

Slow Moving River

High Country Lullaby

The History of Dark Horse (The i-ROK Band)

Disclaimer:  This is a perfectly biased, one-sided view of how it all went down.  For a more objective viewpoint, please consult your nearest Dark Horse relative (because if you’re reading this page, there’s a good chance that you’re either in this band or you are closely related to someone who has been).

Dave Carver, Judy Quist, and Brad Vause began performing together starting in the fall of 1985.  They were part of a dance band called Mint Condition.  For five years, the band consistently delivered a popular cover set that was well received everywhere they performed.  Then, during the first half of 1990, some interesting developments began to take shape.

Dave, who doubled as the band’s manager, began spending more and more time working off shore developing his own business.  The band’s momentum and enthusiasm slowed to a trickle.  During some of the down time Brad began to infuse some original material into the practice set.  By late summer he was feeling like he needed to withdraw his material and either retire it completely or at minimum, find a home for it somewhere else.  He pulled his songs out of the set.  At the next band practice, his deed did not go completely unnoticed, but nothing was said in front of the entire group.  However, the next day Judy called to ask him what had happened to the songs.  When Brad explained that he sensed that there was little enthusiasm for his material, he was told in no uncertain terms that he was wrong.  She said that the songs were worthy of an audience and that if the rest of the band wasn’t interested in developing and publishing them, she would be willing to try to help find people who were excited to make the effort.
By September, they had found two musicians who were willing to conduct an experiment.  A date was set to come together to jam for a while on a new song Brad had written entitled, “The Love of Gold”.  Guitarist Brent Whetton and drummer Bill Davis had never seen each other before.  But they played together impressively and energetically, as if to say that they were interested in far more than a one-time experiment.  Before long, an original set began to take shape and subsequently, a band was formed, jobs were booked, and plans were made to do some recording at a studio.

The group played under two different names before settling on a third, which came directly from the dictionary: 
dark horse – a little known contestant that makes a surprisingly good showing.

When Dave returned to full time work back in the continental U.S., he found that his local music landscape had changed considerably.  The dance band still existed, but with barely a pulse.  The original music experiment, on the other hand, had just released an album and was indeed making a surprisingly good showing.  Before long, Brad and Judy approached Dave about joining the new group and becoming the manager.  He took a good long time to really think it through.  Ultimately, he accepted the invitation.

When Dave saw that some of the content came packaged under titles such as “Lucinda’s Ultra-Modern Fashions”, “Indelibly Unclear”, and “Choose to Lose”, he felt like the new music perhaps needed a new genre.  He called it i-ROK, which was short for intellectual rock and roll.  Appending “(The i-ROK Band)” to the name not only gave an indication of the new genre, but it also distinguished the group from a few other equally obscure startups, at home and abroad, who had adopted the name of Dark Horse.

Over the next fifteen years, Dark Horse would produce eight albums, appear on numerous radio shows and play every possible venue in an effort to make the music gain a foothold.

   The Love of Gold  (1991)
(No cover photo available.  Trust me, it was good.)

       Life On Earth  (1995)        

     The Winner's Circle  (1997)        


       Soar  (1999)


        Sly & Witty (2000)

                                                              Not a Word  (2001)
                                               (cover photo is available, but it was not so good.)



           Colors of the Fall  (2003)

            Cool  (2005)


Then, late in 2004 or early in 2005, Dark Horse (The i-ROK Band) finally ran out of gas.  They decided that the only way that they could keep the band going would be to slow down, back off on the marketing, and just try to play music and enjoy themselves. The key would be to get audiences to also relax and enjoy themselves.  It would require going back to the popular cover set.

Bill Davis took this opportunity to move on to new horizons.  The percussion section would be
staffed by committee for the next several months.  In July, 2005, the band played a reception in Ogden with drummer Reese Barker sitting in.  After the job, Brad and Dave sat down in a local sandwich shop and began discuss what had just transpired.  It was obvious that Reese was a polished professional.  Drums by committee had been neither polished, nor professional.  It seemed like a long shot, but both Dave and Brad were pondering the same question:
“Do you think that there is any way that this guy would consider throwing in with us?”
Within a few days Dave made the inquiry and Reese came on board.

Not long after the band had increased again to five members, it reduced back to four as Brent Whetton was gradually pulled away by ever increasing family responsibilities.

As the cover music began to replace the original, Brad thought it appropriate that the name of Dark Horse be retired with its music.  He thought the name going forward should be “Judy and the Fossils”.  Dave favored the name “Three Man Beasts and a Girl”.  To Judy, there was nothing to talk about.  The i-ROK subtitle would be dropped and the band would continue to be called Dark Horse.  I guess you know who won that argument.

The Dark Horse of today continues to feature Dave on guitar, Brad on keyboard, Judy on vocals, and Reese on drums.  They are still playing a popular set of best-loved classic rock and country cross over cover songs and they are loving every second of it.  Nostalgia lives on and at least for now, there's no end in sight.

Reese Barker - percussion

Hello, everyone. I"m Reese Barker, drummer for Dark Horse the Band. I have been playing percussion/drums for 50 years and have been teaching for 40 years.

My experience includes all types of music and all levels of playing and teaching. I have been in many bands over the years. I continue to teach all ages and experience levels of students-from beginner to advanced, jazz to rock-and-roll. I still take on new students of all ages. My students really have a lot of fun.

I've recorded music at Capitol Records with a band called International Cartel and that was a great experience.

I use electronic drums quite often as they are easier to carry and we can control the volume better if we need to accommodate a smaller area. This is every unique and is a big advantage for the band. My father played drums until he was 100+ years old. I love playing and I love playing with Dark Horse the Band. I hope I'll be playing when I am 100 as well.

Dave Carver - guitar

Playing in the cool summer breeze of Provo Canyon

Maddox, a great place to play

I love to have sheet music even though it looks stupid

Doesn't get any more fun than this.

I've been in a band of one sort or another since the 5th grade. That's 50 years and I love playing more now than ever. I love the people. I love the music. I love the fans. When I die I hope it's playing my guitar on stage and getting struck by lightning. The family knows not to turn the amps off until the police come. They also have instructions to leave the guitar in my hands and put it in the casket.    dc

Brad Vause - keyboard

I guess you could say that I never really did learn to play the piano.  In my life I had only three lessons and not one of them went very well.  About half way through what we both knew would be my last lesson, I asked my frustrated instructor to use the remaining time to teach me everything he could about making chords.  What he proceeded to show me on that afternoon, is still with me today.  I was 17 then and I've been making music ever since.  It has been a blast.

September of 2015 marked the 30 year anniversary of playing in a band with my friends.  Essentially, we sang our way through life.  What could be better than that?

Judy Quist - vocals