Velvet Sheep picks for Xmas 2020


Without further ado, it’s over to Jim for his eggnog flavoured but definitely not cheesy “Xmas song for ewe”…

“I’m a massive fan of the Xmas song and obviously being a Midlander love that golden year of 1973 when Slade and Wizzard released the two classic Christmas songs in one year! But for this year I thought what better song than Johnny Dowd with “Christmas Is Just Another Day.”

Johnny Dowd is a prolific twisted Americana songwriter from Ithaca NY. His albums veer from straight country to weird funk and residents style weirdness. His main lyrical obsessions are the usual country subjects divorce, booze and Jesus but also at least one song an album about his dislike for Christmas. (See also his mangling of Jingle Bells!) This song hits the nail on the head for Christmas haters in the way it can just remind you of missing loved ones, in this case his mum. Merry Christmas!”

And the beat goes on…

Johnny Dowd: Man Up for Xmas

Johnny Dowd has posted a video of him playing his brand new song Man Up for Xmas, giving some sound advice to Santa. This might be the definite title for the tune, but it will do nicely for now.


No Depression – The Best of Everything and a Johnny Dowd Xmas


webclip_amos-perrineIt Was One Helluva Year: The Best of Everything in 2016

Johnny Dowd – Execute American Folklore

It’s hard to  believe that Dowd has 20 albums under his belt, not including his contributions to many others, including my personal favorite: a one-of-a kind revisionist/reimagination tribute to Townes Van Zandt, There’s a Hole in Heaven Where Some Sin Slips Through. I was fortunate to catch Dowd twice in July, where he played songs from his 21st album, Execute American Folklore. I have described him before as William S. Burroughs with a guitar, with a pre/post punk mentality, mixed with alt-country. Live, he’s a tightrope walker. But on record, the firebrand is controlled, smooth to the emotional touch as he glides — first on high, then back down to a semblance of Earth.

Dowd’s half-spoken, half-sung lyrics are like poetry set against more of an electronic backdrop that some of his other work, with a groove, a definite groove. You can also dance to it. A nice example is the segue from “Sexual Revolution” (“You’re either part of the problem or part of the pollution” with an under layer of a tortured “D-I-V-O-R-C-E” Wynette-style). That moves into the electronica of “Mr. Muggles,” punctuated with horns and the operatic vocal of Anna Coogan, where Coogan plays Klaus Nomi to Dowd’s Bowie. Then again into “Rumba in the Park” with a Caribbean, rockabilly feel with a distant fuzzy guitar where you have found yourself in a Jim Jarmusch movie. I don’t think Dowd has ever been more literate than on this album, with his vocals distinctly mixed so you can bask into the Beat-like delivery and imagery.  (Dowd is also included in ND’s fall issue, “Speak Up!”)

 – Original Article with The Rest of the Best

                                           It’s a Johnny Dowd Christmas!

  • webclip_terrell-headerBy Steve Terrell
  • December 25th, 2016

There’s no Terrell’s Sound World tonight, but to make up for it, here are THREE Christmas songs from the unstopable Johnny Dowd!

(Thanks and Merry Xmas to T. Tex Edwards, whose tweet just a few minutes ago inspired this post. Now I’m waiting for the T. Tex Christmas album …)

Live at The Dock – IMOP





Christmas Party for the self-employed !

               At the Dock tonite!





Johnny vs Krampus

gruss_vom_krampusSure, you can support great music .008 cents at a time on Spotify, but you can also score a deal just a couple digits to the left of the decimal place directly from the Man at the Johnny Dowd website.

Check out this message from Kristmas Kat:

Here’s a brand new Johnny song for you.

Johnny wrote and recorded this for The Mouthhole who commissioned the song via his Indiegogo campaign earlier this year. The Mouthhole is a Nashville-based house venue run by Michael Sadler, Zac Caffrey, and Travis Caffrey. It hosts regular parties that feature live music, art, theater, and all things bizarre. It’s home to weirdo rock band The Chewers and electronic monkey man Chop Chop Chang.
Michael, Zac, and Travis created their own fund-raising campaign to raise money for their Johnny song in which they also wrote songs for donors. They wrote 36 songs altogether which are awesome! Be sure to check them out here. There’s even one written for Johnny.

We’ve added some new merch to the store page

— Neon Baptist CDs: Two disks of live recordings of Johnny’s first band in handmade package including photo of Johnny from that era.

Zolar t-shirts: Shirts worn by employees of Johnny’s moving company. Become an honorary Zolar employee!

7-inch vinyl: Johnny song on one side and Mark Lotterman song on the other.

We’ve also slashed the prices of older CDs. Maybe some of your friends and family would like Johnny music for Christmas? Or maybe Johnny’s song “Christmas is Just Another Day” would suit you? (It’s on the Cemetery Shoes CD.) All CDs will be autographed.


Here are folks majorly digging some objects-yes,actually objects-from Johnny. Some are IndieGoGo perks, some long time collections (we’d love to see yours!):


A Note from from The Mouthhole:

A man named Johnny Dowd had a good idea, so we stole it. To raise money for his next album, living legend
Johnny Dowd offered a reward on a crowdfunding website:
for $1000 he would write a song about you.
The residents of The Mouthhole
Nashville’s weirdest house venue, wanted a Johnny Dowd song about us, but we are poor.
We decided – we should raise crowdfunding
to donate to Johnny Dowd’s crowdfunding and get a song made about The Mouthhole.

And what would our offered reward be? We’ll make songs too. If you donate even $1 we will make a song about you.
So we did. You are now holding a collection of rewards. They were recorded quickly and efficiently in order to keep the flow (and there ended up being 36 of them).

Each member of The Mouthhole Band rotated instruments for each song. Lyrics, with occasional exception, were written
by committee. We raised approximately $760 dollars. Johnny Dowd made us a song anyway, because he liked our idea that we stole from him.
He named the song “The Mouthhole”.
We named this album “Name Songs”.


released November 21, 2016

The Mouthhole Band is
Michael Sadler
Zac Caffrey
Morgan Ames
Travis Caffrey


KindaMuzik Reviews The Paradiso show


– Original article

Johnny Dowd Excorcises the Devil with a Rythmbox
23 april 2015, Paradiso, Amsterdam

Author: Jaks Schuit
Published: 26 April 2015

Three minutes before the start of his show Johnny Dowd walks on to the stage. He chats a little with a few people in the audience and plugs in his guitar. Dowd had already been accused of killing American folk Music long before the release of his most recent album, That’s Your Wife on the Back of my Horse. It is what he enjoys doing, he downplays his own achievements and always succeeds in entertaining his audience.

Dowd opens his lyrics notebook and takes off with the title song of his fourteenth and latest album. During the next song Dowd’s companion guitar player breaks one of his strings. Mike Edmondson has to return to the dressing room to repair the damage. Dowd turns on a rhythm box and continues the show by himself. He requests the audience to assist him. ‘Holland has the best singers’, he says.

He starts the chorus of ‘John Deer Yeller’ and asks the audience to sing along with the line ‘Gonna love that girl, till the day I die’. When they start Dowd calls the singers ‘a choir of angels’ and he joins with the first verse. The song is concluded with a guitar solo that could have been the assignment for a very young student at his first music class. Dowd’s way of playing the guitar seems surprisingly simple, but always sounds just right. In addition he has the pleasant ability to sing a few false notes at exactly the right moment.

In the meantime his companion Mike returns to the stage and decides to take a break after a job done. Dowd puts down his guitar and recites the song ‘Drip Drop’. Each verse finishes with the beautiful sentence: ‘That was long ago / That was yesterday.

After each song Dowd chats a little and and manages to keep the audience entertained continuously . He makes a few dance steps and gives companion Mike another break. After approximately sixty minutes Dowd starts a christmas song. After ‘XMAS’ he stands up, thanks his parents, the audience, Mike and Prince. ‘Still one of the best artists on guitar’, he says. And announces his encore ‘Smile’ by Charlie Chaplin rightaway.

Dowd concludes his show in the same way he started it. He shakes a few hands and waves at the audience. Dowd is not a musician for a perfect show, but with a rhythm box and a fellow musician he is capable of entertaining any audience for over an hour. He is mocking everybody and mostly himself in the process. For his last album he wrote ‘The Devil Don’t Bother Me’, a song that fits him like a glove. Nobody is calling the shots but Dowd. Let’s hope this will be the case for years to come.

-Translated by Wieke Wagenaar (saving us from Google translate!)