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The Doobie Brothers

As one of the most popular California pop/rock bands of the '70s, the Doobie Brothers evolved from a mellow, post-hippie boogie band to a slick, soul-inflected pop band by the end of the decade. Along the way, the group racked up a string of gold and platinum albums in the U.S., along with a number of radio hits like "Listen to the Music," "Black Water," and "China Grove."

The roots of the Doobie Brothers lie in Pud, a short-lived California country-rock band in the vein of Moby Grape featuring guitarist/vocalist Tom Johnston and drummer John Hartman. After Pud collapsed in 1969, the pair began jamming with bassist Dave Shogren and guitarist Patrick Simmons. Eventually, the quartet decided to form a group, naming themselves the Doobie Brothers after a slang term for marijuana. Soon, the Doobies earned a strong following throughout Southern California, especially among Hell's Angels, and they were signed to Warner Bros. in 1970. The band's eponymous debut was ignored upon its 1971 release. Following its release, Shogren was replaced by Tiran Porter and the group added a second drummer, Michael Hossack, for 1972's Toulouse Street. Driven by the singles "Listen to the Music" and "Jesus Is Just Alright," Toulouse Street became the group's breakthrough. The Captain and Me (1973) was even more successful, spawning the Top Ten hits "Long Train Runnin'" and "China Grove."

Keith Knudsen replaced Hossack as the group's second drummer for 1974's What Were Once Vices Are Now Habits, which launched their first number one single, "Black Water," and featured heavy contributions from former Steely Dan member Jeff "Skunk" Baxter. Baxter officially joined the Doobie Brothers for 1975's Stampede. Prior to the album's spring release, Johnston was hospitalized with a stomach ailment and was replaced for the supporting tour by keyboardist/vocalist Michael McDonald, who had also worked with Steely Dan. Although it peaked at number four, Stampede wasn't as commercially successful as its three predecessors, and the group decided to let McDonald and Baxter, who were now official Doobies, revamp the band's light country-rock and boogie.

The new sound was showcased on 1976's Takin' It to the Streets, a collection of light funk and jazzy pop that resulted in a platinum album. Later that year, the group released the hits compilation The Best of the Doobies. In 1977, they released Livin' on the Fault Line, which was successful without producing any big hits. Johnston left the band after the album's release to pursue an unsuccessful solo career. Following his departure, the Doobies released their most successful album, Minute by Minute (1978), which spent five weeks at number one on the strength of the number one single "What a Fool Believes." Hartman and Baxter left the group after the album's supporting tour, leaving the Doobie Brothers as McDonald's backing band.

Following a year of auditions, the Doobies hired ex-Clover guitarist John McFee, session drummer Chet McCracken, and former Moby Grape saxophonist Cornelius Bumpus, and released One Step Closer (1980), a platinum album that produced the Top Ten hit "Real Love." During the tour for One Step Closer, McCracken was replaced by Andy Newmark. Early in 1982, the Doobie Brothers announced they were breaking up after a farewell tour, which was documented on the 1983 live album Farewell Tour. After the band's split, McDonald pursued a successful solo career, while Simmons released one unsuccessful solo record. In 1987, the Doobies reunited for a concert at the Hollywood Bowl, which quickly became a brief reunion tour; McDonald declined to participate in the tour.

By 1989, the early-'70s lineup of Johnston, Simmons, Hartman, Porter, and Hossack, augmented by percussionist and former Doobies roadie Bobby LaKind, had signed a contract with Capitol Records. Their reunion album, Cycles, went gold upon its summer release in 1989, spawning the Top Ten hit "The Doctor." Brotherhood followed two years later, but it failed to generate much interest. For the remainder of the '90s, the group toured the U.S., playing the oldies circuit and '70s revival concerts. By 1995, McDonald had joined the group again, and the following year saw the release of Rockin' Down the Highway. But the lineup had once again shifted by the turn of the new millennium. In 2000, the band -- Hossack, Johnston, Knudsen, McFee, and Simmons -- issued Sibling Rivalry, which featured touring members Guy Allison on keyboards, Marc Russo on saxophone, and Skylark on bass. The late-'70s incarnation of the band -- Simmons, Johnston, McFee, and Hossack (with Michael McDonald guesting on one track) -- reunited once again to put out World Gone Crazy in 2010. The band-assisted documentary Let the Music Play: The Story of the Doobie Brothers followed in 2012, the same year Hossack died of cancer.

In early 2014, the Doobie Brothers -- this time featuring McDonald, Johnston, Simmons, and McFee -- announced they were returning to the studio to record an album filled with country versions of their greatest hits, featuring such Nashville stars as Toby Keith, Brad Paisley, Zac Brown, Sara Evans, and Chris Young. Called Southbound, the album appeared in November. ~ Stephen Thomas Erlewine, Rovi
full bio

Selected Discography

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Track List: Black Water (Single)

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Track List: Nobody (Radio Edit) (Radio Single)

Comments

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unique Peombo
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Wat a fool believes
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Groovy Tune.
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Like. Them. Doobies
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Have toluse street great album
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I wasn't born when this song debuted. But it is and always will be a fave along with "I keep forgetting"
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Oh yeah
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dragonlady60 8 8
i love...this song and michaels voice
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Song reminds me of the movie Joe dirt
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mmolina24
Not in the hall. ponderous
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Cowgirl nailed it!
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They might been post hippie, they was one of the early 70s one of the greatest bands ever
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wtmatt349
Rock on
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jay.koplove
I grew up on the doobies. Long may they live. Listen to the dam music. Alll the time.
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Another park another Sunday.
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Listen to The Music: Always.
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I love Black Water
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Growing up to this group it never got old some group's u just get burned out on but not the doobies . never gets old love this frickun group
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dont read this because it actually works. You will
get kissed on the nearest possible friday by the
love of your life. tommorrow will be the best day of
your life. however if you do not post this comment
to at least 3 songs you will die in 2 days. now
youve started reading this so dont stop. this is so
scary put this on at least 5 songs in at least 143
minutes when if done press f6 and your lovers
name will appear on the screen in big letters this is
scary cuz it actually work
Report as inappropriate
yamobeeeedaa r . . . . . ? ? ? ? just makes me laugh...love the doobies...bl a c k water a fav...but i agree w earlier post about michael mcdonald..he never did it for me...sounds like the martian from bugs bunny cartoons...l o l . . .
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Great band to see live these guys really know what they were doing
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I mean, could there have been a better name for a band in the 70's? I have their first album and every one since. I buy every Vices/Habits album I can find because there is a great poster in the album. As for their outstanding music throughout the years, can someone tell me why they are not in the R&R HOF? Seems fishy to me.Fire up Neal's Fandango and Road Angel and then mellow out on Pat's Black Water and it set's the tone for even more- Takin' It To The Streets, Clear As The Driven Snow, The C
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janecichy
Oh those days!
A car, a cute guy and the 8 track player!
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muneca1166
Smoking a doob with the Doobies, Those were the days! How time flys!
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sandymcleod1 7
AWESOME BAND
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dragonlady60 8 8
doobies ...one of the greatest ...!
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Classic!!!!!
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From Boogie Band to Blue Eyed Soul. Wow!
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I grew up in CA listening to the Dobbies pre Michael and post. Enjoy both styles and they still make me feel good when I hear thier tracks.
I saw them a few years ago in NC at a multi venue complex. There were such a range of age groups walking in I thought some people were entering the wrong venue haha. People in thier 70s were mimicking tokin a doob.
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Past that doobie around man. Use to listen the their music all the time hell what I'm i doing now I'm listen to their music. This is some good s**t I'm smokin
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darren305rg
LET DA MUZIC PLAY
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Brings me to some good times
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Every one loves the DOOBIE BROTHERS
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Love song love group.
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ttslb1995
Love this group.....gr e a t music!!
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dragonlady60 8 8
China grove
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michaelantho n y b i l l i n g s
The only time i didn't like the Doobies was when McDonald sang. Couldn't stand the syle or timber of his voice. I know I'm in the minority but his voice grated on me like finger nails on a chalk board.
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One of my favorites!!! But then all of their songs are my favorites. ....
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classic at its finest
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All these Groups put - out a hell of KICK,A**
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johnmargie6
Really.....? ? Why would you not love any of there music
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melinda.odon n e l l 5
Tom Johnston from Visalia ca ... Hoohaaa..
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you just got to love the doobies
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No wise man has the power
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Which Doobie you be?
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Love these guys music.
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Will love forever
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Brings me back to the early teen years . Oh boy early to mid '. 70's it is then...
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Great band awesome n the 70s awesome n 2015
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tmoe6
I have loved the Doobies since I first heard Listen To The Music back in '72. Baby, let the music play!
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