The End of Indie Rock As We Know It


Philly’s Dr. Dog Loses Key Member; Band’s Future in Jeopardy

Dr. Dog Download: “East Beat”
Dr. Dog Download: “Wake Up”
Dr. Dog Download: “Oh No

Since K. Sanneh’s big-ass feature on the band earlier this year in the Times, Philly lo-fi rockers Dr. Dog have come into a label deal, South By Southwest dates, and even a spot at Bonnaroo, arguably the second (or third) best rock festival in the world. Dr. Dog are on the up-and-up, sometimes down but mostly up. They are the next U2– a U2 with no Bono, no shifty earth science agenda– a U2 with 10,000 The Edges all jamming out on “Vertigo” in the exact same key, every day for the next five days.

In other words, we would never have expected Andrew Jones, the band’s guitarist/lawyer, to quit the good Doctor at the height of the band’s popularity. But he quit, he’s angry, and Riff Raff’s on the tip.

Why did you leave Dr. Dog?

I have a tryout for Who Wants To Be a Millionaire. That’s pretty important to me. And I don’t want a band interfering with my ability to win a million dollars. I think that would be kinda ridiculous, if I woke up one morning and realized I had missed out on a million dollars because I had to play in this rock band. At some point in your life, when you get to be an adult, you have to work out your priorities. The audition went really well, I passed the written test, and I think my personal interview went really nicely.

What sort of questions?

Similar to the show. There was one about what Martha Stewart’s job was before she became a home design guru– I think that’s actually one of the ones I got wrong, because apparently she was a stock broker. I didn’t realize that. There are also some history questions about Independence Day and Nicaragua, like what does an entomologist do, those sort of questions, the kind that pop up on the show. They’re all written down and then you fill them in on the scantron sheet.

Assuming you get on the show, are you going to use any of the members of your ex-band Dr. Dog as lifelines?

I don’t think that would go so well. I could maybe call Zach about questions related to light bulbs, since he’s really into collecting light bulbs. Beyond that, he really doesn’t know anything. Justin, I could call him about combing your hair, like hair-combing technique– maybe fixing cars. I’ve known these guys for a long time, I think I know what they know.

So you left Dr. Dog because the band members would be terrible lifelines.

It certainly doesn’t help that they couldn’t support me in something that’s really important in my life.

Do you still tutor for Kaplan Test Prep?

I still do that part-time. Right now I’m tutoring a kid for the LSAT. But this guy doesn’t know [about me leaving Dr. Dog] yet, I’ve only met with him once. I don’t want to get him involved in all this.

Were there any times when Dr. Dog relied on you for legal advice?

We’ve played in hotels where I just kinda go in and act like I’m the only person staying there, because you get a cheaper rate. And one time this guy– Zach and Justin went down for the free continental breakfast, which I would have advised against, but I was in the shower– and this guy was insisting that we pay extra because we had so many people in there. But I pointed out he had never asked me how many people were staying there. I really felt like I had a strong argument and it was gonna work out nicely, but then he caught Zach in the hallway and cornered him, and Zach gave him ten bucks.

Are you going to get a job at a practice or something then?

Hopefully not. Hopefully I’ll just have a million dollars.

Dr. Dog plays tonight, June 30, at the Mercury Lounge, 9:30pm