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Dr. Dog Biography

Home > Music > D > Dr. Dog > Biography

Birth Place: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA
Years Active: 1999–present
Genres: Psychedelic Rock, Indie Rock, Baroque Pop

Dr. Dog is a psychedelic rock band from West Grove, Pennsylvania. Its lineup currently consists of Toby Leaman (bass), Scott McMicken (lead guitar), Frank McElroy (rhythm guitar), Zach Miller (keyboard), and Eric Slick (drums). Lead vocal duties are shared between Leaman and McMicken, with all members contributing harmonies. In addition, each band member has a nickname, and they have explained that friends of the band also receive nicknames, which are drawn from aspects of their lives and personalities. The band's version of pop-rock is strongly influenced by bands of the 1960s. Their earlier recordings show influence of the lo-fi sound and pop sensibilities of indie rock bands of the 1990s, such as Guided By Voices and Pavement. Recent albums have featured more polished production.

The band began as an offshoot of Leaman's and McMicken's earlier music project called Racoon. Dr. Dog formed with the addition of Miller, whose PhD in English Literature inspired the band's name, drummer Ted Mark, and guitarist Doug O'Donnell. Their early recordings were experimental and recorded on eight track. They self-recorded and self-released their first album “The Psychedelic Swamp” in 2001. They released “Toothbrush” in 2002. Mark left the band in 2003 and O'Donnell left in 2004. The band's early years were spent largely in and around Philadelphia where they developed a small fanbase.

They signed with Park The Van Records, who released the album “Easy Beat,” in 2005. Late 2005 saw the departure of Jones, who became a full-time lawyer. Jones was replaced by Frank McElroy. The band continued to tour heavily as their popularity grew, due in part to their use of the internet to promote their growing catalog.

Through the late summer of 2007, Dr. Dog streamed ten unreleased tracks on their website, with a new song debuting weekly. Songs were posted each Monday from July 2 until September 3 of 2007. These recordings were later released as an album, titled “Passed Away, Vol. 1.” In 2008, the band released “Fate” which reached #12 on the Billboard Independent Albums chart and #86 on the Billboard 200 Albums chart.

In July 2009, Dr. Dog signed to Anti- Records. Their first album on the label, titled “Shame, Shame,” was released in April 2010. The album became their most successful, reaching #6 on the Independent and Alternative Albums charts and #44 on the Billboard 200.

Their album, “Be The Void,” was released by ANTI- in February 2012. The album reached #45 on the Billboard 200, while again reaching #6 on the Independent Albums chart.