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Back to Section One | Back to Arts & Entertainment
posted Friday, September 3, 2010 - Volume 38 Issue 36
Arts & Entertainment
ALL STORIES
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Moondoggies look forward to playing Bumbershoot

by Albert Rodriguez - SGN A&E Writer

For a city that has produced a stream of high-profile music acts, from Jimi Hendrix to Death Cab for Cutie and every grunge band in between, Seattle can be a surprisingly difficult place to launch a music project. The expectations to succeed and become the next big thing certainly weigh upon each artist with the slightest potential to break through. Ready to take the plunge is local indie quartet The Moondoggies, signed to a subsidiary label of Sub Pop and already enlisting the assistance of a major national firm to handle press for their forthcoming album, Tidelands. The buzz out there is that the new material is amazing and will give The Moondoggies the outer-Northwest exposure they've been hoping for - something lead singer Kevin Murphy is optimistic about. I caught up with him this week, as he wrapped up a shift at his day job - it pays the bills, for now - and here's what the frontman of The Moondoggies shared with me when we met in The Music Lounge.

Albert Rodriguez: I was trying to find a definition for "Moondoggie," but wasn't successful. Where did this word or band name come from?

Kevin Murphy: The first time I ever heard the term "Moondoggie" was in that movie Gidget. I used to be in a punk band and that was what we first had on all of our demos - we called them The Moondoggies.

Rodriguez: When did you form into a band?

Murphy: Well, I've known everybody for a long time before we were The Moondoggies. Caleb [Quick] and I lived in Bellingham for a little bit and we played together, and I've known Bob [Terreberry] and Carl [Dahlen] since high school. But as The Moondoggies, it's probably been since 2006, I think, when we started playing in Bob's garage.

Rodriguez: Have you guys ever played Bumbershoot?

Murphy: No, there've kind of been weird issues with blackout dates and unfortunately, for some reason, we couldn't do it last year. But I've grown up here, so it's one of those things you always want to do and hope to get the opportunity to play it.

Rodriguez: For the Bumbershoot performance, have you guys started rehearsing? Will you be playing new songs from the upcoming album?

Murphy: A lot of these songs have been around for a while. In fact, we're practicing more frequently and we have even newer stuff that I'm hoping we can get done by Bumbershoot. Even though these songs are new, we have even newer ones that I'd like to feel out.

Rodriguez: Are there any other artists performing at Bumbershoot that you're excited to see?

Murphy: I'd like to go see David Bazan because his last album was amazing and I've met him a few times. I know that some of the Weedle's Groove people are playing there, and they're pretty awesome. We're playing on Monday and I'm not sure who's headlining that day.

Rodriguez: Is it Bob Dylan or Mary J. Blige?

Murphy: I think Dylan is on Saturday. It's like Weezer, Courtney Love, or somebody. I was a big Weezer person in high school, but not too fond of anything post-Pinkerton.

Rodriguez: Aside from headlining dates, will you open any shows for other bands in the coming months?

Murphy: In November, we're touring with a band called Dawes - they're an L.A. band. We've toured with both The Cave Singers and Blitzen Trapper, and each tour has been enjoyable.

Rodriguez: Any wild tour stories? Long drinking binges, or not finding your hotel early in the morning?

Murphy: One time in Eugene, we stayed with these hippy people and they didn't remember us the next morning, so it was really awkward and we had to get out of there. We were literally talking to them all night, and the next day they were like, "Who are you?" and we said, "Get in the van, let's go!"

Rodriguez: What are some of your early concert memories?

Murphy: We used to go to the Redmond Fire House a lot - I remember seeing the Murder City Devils, and that was pretty rad. I remember seeing The Hives and International Noise Conspiracy at Graceland.

Rodriguez: What are some of your favorite places in Seattle to get your buzz on?

Murphy: I haven't been going out in a while. We actually built a bar in our garage and we'll invite people over there. But once in a while I'll go out and hang with some of the Maldives boys and Grand Hallway people [fellow Seattle bands] out in Ballard, to Conor Byrne or Hazelwood. In my neighborhood, there's the Ravenna Alehouse.

Rodriguez: What's your favorite song to do karaoke?

Murphy: The one that I do a lot is "In the Summertime" by Mungo Jerry. But I have to throw this out there, my brother is really funny, he always does "The Star Spangled Banner."

Rodriguez: The Whitney Houston or Roseanne Barr version?

Murphy: Something in between.

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Five acts to catch at Bumbershoot
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Asian Pacific Islander Pageant returns to Seattle
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Cho-Dependent a hilarious night of comedy and music
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Drag superstar Varla Jean Merman spends an evening in Seattle
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A Dyke About Town: John Hiatt rocks Zoo Tunes
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Bizet's Carmen gives tired opera another chance
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Rufus Wainwright gives emotional, complex performance
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Tripping the light fantastic: An interview with Burn the Floor's Gary Wright
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Fantasy Swan crashes into reality
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Bloody Machete goes back to the grindhouse
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The Last Exorcism doesn't close the deal
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Scissor Sisters, Dierks Bentley, Arcade Fire top September concerts
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Q-Scopes by Jack Fertig
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Moondoggies look forward to playing Bumbershoot
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Northwest News
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Letters
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Scissor Sisters interview with Seattle Gay News next week
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