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The Walkmen

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Biography

Washington, D.C. (2000 – present)

The Walkmen are an American indie rock band, with members based in New York City and Philadelphia. The band formed in 2000 with three members from Jonathan Fire*Eater—Paul Maroon (guitar, piano), Walter Martin (organ/bass), and Matt Barrick (drums)—and two from The Recoys, Peter Bauer (bass/organ) and Hamilton Leithauser (vocals, guitar). All but Bauer attended St. Albans in Washington, D.C.

They prefer the sound of vintage musical instruments, particularly the upright piano, and have often recorded at Marcata Recording, a recording studio built in Harlem in 1999 by the three former members of Jonathan Fire*Eater and later relocated to upstate New York.

Each of the members of The Walkmen grew up in and around the Washington, D.C. area, played in many of the same bands from early in their careers, and even attended the same Washington-area high school. The bandmates eventually moved to Harlem and became a part of the burgeoning New York City rock scene.

The band was formed in 2000 following the breakup of two separate bands: Jonathan Fire*Eater, whose members included Martin, Maroon and Barrick, and The Recoys, whose members included Leithauser and Bauer. The three members from Jonathan Fire*Eater, which had recorded for Dreamworks Records, had money left over from that past recording contract and used the remaining funds to construct a rehearsal space in uptown New York. The rehearsal space featured a 24-track recording studio and was dubbed Marcata Studios.

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