Live @ KOHI Kulturraum Karlshrue review


photo by Kat Dalton

Songs of unfulfilled longing
American nightmare: The 70-year-old songwriter Johnny Dowd in Kohi

Arrangements are rough and beautiful

No, Johnny Dowd did not drink a bit too much, Tom Severer from Kohi says, “He’s just an old man.” And that’s right Dowd was born in Fort Worth Texas in 1948. As a teenager, he volunteered the army came to Berlin for these to Vietnam in the sixties, and for two years in Berlin. “Since then, Germany and this city have been”, he mumbles, and admits that his thoughts on this period are first of his “experiences in the army, the many wars, and all the trouble. “What men have since learned, he does not know:” But most of them have most likely forgotten.
His acclaimed performance has been in the air for a few minutes, he has been smoking a cigarette out of doors and is now sitting behind the black table with hanging shoulders and saddest eyes, where band mate and brother-in-law Michael Edmondson sells CDs and poetry. Edmondson has been talking to Dowd for 33 years, starting in New York’s punk band Neon Baptist. His autographs and dedications are always provided by Dowd with a small drawing. Selzer hands him a glass of bourbon. Johnny Dowd has had to endure this world long enough to tell a lot. For a long time he worked as a furniture packer and had his own company. The first marriage is said to have lasted only two weeks.
Today he’s only doing rock n roll In the song “Dream On” dedicated to his current wife, he complains; “I did the best that I could but did not do what I should.” At first he probably just tried to spend his time in a good mood. Anyone who, after the wildest youth, only picks up a guitar at the age of 30 and starts making music, will always listen well and have seen a lot. Edmondson calls him a “real guy” “and is right. Because Dowd does not play a role in his role but the American nightmare of the eternally unfulfilled yearning. Yes, that’s Rock n Roll Blues Folk Americana. This is not songwriting but songsuffering.
Dowd creates arrangements that are so rude and beautiful that you almost stifle the fulfillment. Everywhere one hears the americanish 20th year dying out, which is dying. If you lose your sense of humor, it will be really bad, “he says,” you pack the sentence in your backpack and look forward to the next morning. “That’s life, Matthias Dreisigacker

Alternative-Country irgendwo zwischen Noise, Elektro, Punk und DiY (NY-Ithaca) Einlass 19.30h

Johnny Dowd trinkt gerne Whisky, ist Vietnamveteran und ehemaliger Möbelspediteur, war immerhin mal zwei Wochen verheiratet und singt, so schrieb ein Rezensent, “wie ein Serienkiller, der in einem Staubsauger gefangen ist”. Seine Songs sind skurrile Gesamtkunstwerke, zusammengebastelt aus Versatzstücken von Country, Blues und allem anderen. Dazu scheppert das Schlagzeug, Texte über unerwiderte Liebe, Mord und andere Fiesheiten stellen einem die Nackenhaare, und verzerrte Gitarren krachen, als würde es kein Morgen geben. Gibt es vielleicht auch nicht, denn wie Dowd selbst sagt: “Ich bin mir nicht sicher, wie viele Melodien ich noch in mir habe. Tick tock.” (a)

Johnny Dowd likes to drink whiskey, is a Vietnam veteran and former furniture forwarder, was married for two weeks and sings, a reviewer wrote, ” like a serial killer trapped in a vacuum cleaner. ” His songs are quirky Gesamtkunstwerke, made up of pieces of country, blues and everything else. The drums clank, lyrics about unrequited love, murder and other nasties put the hackles, and distorted guitars crack, as if there would be no tomorrow. Maybe it does not exist because, as Dowd himself says, “I’m not sure how many tunes I still have in it, tick tock.”

Live @ Grassroots – In the Cabaret Sat. 9pm One Show Only

“Country-soul rejects no useful tool in its arsenal of dark expression – in the house of Johnny Dowd, drum machines and punk guitar tear the place apart, and story puts things back together, even if there are cracks left in the walls from all the ruckus. Find Johnny in the Cabaret Hall on Saturday at 9pm.”


WASHINGTON, DC – NOVEMBER 9, 2017: Johnny Dowd performs at Hill Country Live in Washington, DC opening for Pere Ubu. (Photo by Richie Downs)


Grassroots interview 2015



The new record is coming along swimmingly. I guess if I were to put it in a genre, it would be Alt Country/Roots Rock/Americana, etc. They’re the kind of tunes I was writing 20 years ago. Mike Edmondson plays some great rock and roll guitar, and the icing on the cake is the return of Kim Sherwood Caso, singing better than ever. Still some work to do, but this may be a breakthrough album. Grammys, here I come. 


Grassroots 2016 with The Sex Robots

Live on WVBR 93.5 FM Tuesdays with the Band


Today features Johnny Dowd. So if you start with a rock base, add a bit of punk and run it through a gritty synth filter, here is where you’d end up. Check out his album “Twinkle Twinkle” below and listen with us today from 6-7 pm!



Johnny Dowd: working on a new record


  • By Hans Werksman
  • June 5th, 2018

photo: Kat Dalton (Polaroid SX-70)

Johnny Dowd is working on his next record. Too early to tell what it will sound like at this stage, but it will see the return of Kim Sherwood-Caso:

Hello good people. Working on a new record. Pretty early in the process, but so far it’s sounding like a grungy garage rock thing, circa 1965. My buddy Mike Edmondson laid down some nasty guitar tracks, and I tracked some vocals yesterday. Speaking of vocals, I’m going to get my old singing partner Kim Sherwood-Caso on this record. Sort of a return to Wrong Side of Memphis, nice and raw. Anyway, that’s what it’s sounding like at this point. Don’t hold me to it.

HCTF review of Twinkle, Twinkle.

 – Original Article

Your Vote DOES Count! Mojo reviews Execute American Folklore


Now it’s time to log in and vote in the No Depression Readers Poll. And just to make it perfectly clear:


Jeez, you think they left out any genres???



Execute American Folklore Tour – Music Star


U-70, urchig, archaisch, intensiv, authentisch: Johnny Dowd (*1948) trinkt gern Whisky und singt wie «ein Serienkiller, der in einem Staubsauger gefangen ist.» Der frühere Möbelpacker und Vietnamveteran war immerhin mal zwei Wochen lang verheiratet.

Und er lässt die Gitarren heute noch wuchtig krachen, zusammen mit funky Orgeln und trieb-schepperndem Schlagzeug, als hinge sein Leben davon ab. Das tut es auch. Tarantino-Country für die einen, Lynch-Gothic für die anderen. Der Schmerz ist spürbar, Religion ist Thema, aber nur schwer rollstuhlgängig oder auf freigeschabten Kniescheiben über Rollsplit zur Heiligen Bernadette in Lourdes rutschend. Punk liegt in der Luft, ein Hauch Fiesheit. Zynismus wird Ironie und Jim Morrison zum unbekannten Soldaten auf dem Friedhof Père Lachaise in Paris. Irgendwann nennt man das Kult, Brian Wilson und Jim White können nicht irren. Und wir Inselbewohner haben JD ja längst die Unsterblichkeit der el Lokal Hall of Fame verliehen.

«Das ist das Album, das ich seit langem mal machen wollte,» sagt Dowd zu seinem neusten Streich «Wake Up The Snakes» und führt uns souverän zurück in die Zeit, als Soul-Musik auf Garage-Rock traf. Verzerrte Bässe, Farfisa-Orgel und viele «My baby left me»-Texte. Mal wieder was anderes für den umtriebigen Texaner, der seit seinem ersten Album 1997 entlegenen Pfade zwischen Country, Blues, Rock’n’Roll für sich und uns neu entdeckt hat. Also: Auf in unsere paradiesische Schlangengrube auf der aufgeweckten Weltkulturinsel am Krokosihl River. Zum 3. Mal bereits in Norderstedt, diesmal mit illustren Gästen.

Nancy    Poor But Proud   Silver Claw



U-70, conservative, archaic, intense, authentic: Johnny Dowd (* 1948) likes to drink whiskey and sings like the earlier movers and Vietnam veteran was, after been married for two weeks, “a serial killer who is trapped in a vacuum cleaner.”.

And he lets the guitars still massive blast, along with funky organs, driving-rattling drums, as if his life depended on it. That it does. Tarantino Country for a Lynch-Gothic for the other. The pain is felt, religion is present, it is difficult skidding wheelchairs or on freigeschabten kneecaps over loose chippings to Saint Bernadette in Lourdes. Punk is in the air, a hint of nastiness. Cynicism is irony and Jim Morrison to the Unknown Soldier at the Père Lachaise Cemetery in Paris. Sometime called the Cult, Brian Wilson and Jim White can not be wrong. And we islanders have long since JD immortality of el local Hall of Fame awarded.

“This is the album I wanted to make since long time,” says Dowd for his latest prank “Wake Up The Snakes” and leads us confidently back in time, met as soul music on garage rock. Distorted bass, Farfisa organ and many “My baby left me” -texts. Once again something else for the enterprising Texan who has discovered and since his first album in 1997 remote paths between country, blues, rock and roll itself new to us.So: At our paradise snake pit on the aufgeweckten World Heritage island on Krokosihl River. For the 3rd time already in Norderstedt, this time with illustrious guests.

 – Original Article

Thomas Niehaus, Heiner Lahn and Wolfgang Sedlatschek (NorderstedtMusik) captured a few songs of the Johnny Dowd concert @ Music Star in Norderstedt, Germany (October 13, 2016). He was accompanied by The Sex Robots (Anna Coogan & Michael Edmondson). Watch them perform A World Without Me (mislabeld as “Love Bucket”) and Rhumba in The Park from his latest album Execute American Folklore.

 – Original article