I first saw The Dogs at The Troubadour a few years ago and they slashed my face off. I left wondering why I had never heard of them since they were part of the Detroit rock scene in the 70’s that my friends and I so longed for in our 1980’s high school years in Toronto. The first Stooges album changed my life, the MC5 got me interested in politics – undoubtedly I would have embraced The Dogs who wrote a song to free John Sinclair, played CBGBs in ripped jeans before the Ramones were a band, and opened for The MC5 and The Stooges – hello!
But as The Dogs themselves have proven for decades, rock and roll has no expiration date, and this weekend at Blue Bag Records, I got to pretend I was sixteen again discovering a ‘new’ old band. The Dogs played to a packed record store and filmed a video for their new single, Ain’t Going Nowhere, featured on their upcoming Smelvis Records EP of the same name.
The Dogs are Loren Molinare on guitar, Mary Kay on bass & Tony Matteucci on drums. They crammed their huge sound into this little space, and the result was butt-shakin’ and “Fuck Yeah!” worthy. Just ask the 20-something kids in the back of the store who had their fists in the air after Loren introduced “Fed Up” with a rant about joining the SDS (Students for a Democratic Society) as a kid and fighting the man. They also seemed to relate to the part about being too punk for rock and too rock for punk, which appears to be the general consensus of why The Dogs aren’t lauded as loudly as the MC5, for example. If only those record people had come to my high school.
The video for Ain’t Going Nowhere is shot, directed and produced by Drew Echo. Check out his YouTube channel – there’s a short film called Ball & Chain on there worthy of his company name True/Faux! He was so easy going at the record store shoot, doing everything himself. Love that.
My friend Julie Scher Molinare was there cheering on her hubby, pictured here showcasing a previous Dogs release that the band was giving away on vinyl to the first 25 lucky people through the door. Julie is a landscape designer here in the L.A. area, and as you can see from the picture, a really fun person to be around.
I also made a new friend (in the video shoot mosh pit!) named Brenda Starr Light – and I can’t believe I didn’t photograph the jacket she had on – this is one stylish woman, people. I need lessons. Not pictured here is my other mosh pit buddy Leslie Knauer who played in Kanary with Matteucci.
Chris from Blue Bag Records made it all possible with his cool Echo Park store. Thanks Chris, see you next time!
A bonus picture of The Dogs Mary and Loren in a different era for those of you who read the whole blog! Thanks to photographer Heather Harris for this legendary shot. She says it was taken either at Coconut Teazer or Club Lingerie in Los Angeles. She has a full gallery of The Dogs photos here!