News / Arts & Entertainment

With The Winery Dogs Veteran Rockers Create All-Star Trio

The Winery Dogs
The Winery Dogs
Katherine Cole
Three veteran rockers have come together to create an all-star trio.
 
The names are familiar: drummer Mike Portnoy co-founded and spent 25 years with Dream Threatre, while recently playing with Adrenaline Mob. Bassist Billy Sheehan and singer-guitarist Richie Kotzen were together in Mr. Big. Together, the three call themselves The Winery Dogs.

The Winery Dogs’ debut album might not be exactly what Portnoy’s longtime fans expected. Portnoy, after all, earned his way into the Modern Drummer Magazine Hall of Fame performing progressive rock and heavy metal. He says The Winery Dogs is something different - music inspired by the groups they all grew up listening to.

“Bands like Zeppelin and The Who, The Stones, and The Beatles, Cream, and Hendrix. I mean, I grew up with that stuff," he said. "And, although I’ve been able to pay tribute to it throughout my career with tribute bands and things like that, I’ve never been in an all-original band that was kind of playing classic rock power trio stuff. That’s how I describe this band: just a straight up rock band.”

With The Winery Dogs Veteran Rockers Create All-Star Trio
With The Winery Dogs Veteran Rockers Create All-Star Trioi
|| 0:00:00
...    
🔇
X

Portnoy says most of the songs on The Winery Dogs were collaborative efforts, written with the three band mates together in a room, just bouncing ideas off each other.

“In all cases, the music was the very first element and from there, Richie would start melodies on top of it. Sometimes the final lyrics were there, coming up on the spot, and other times he would take the melodies and write lyrics later," he said. "There were a couple of examples of Richie having something and bringing it in. In those cases, like “Damaged” and “Regret” we just left them. Because in those two particular cases, the songs were great as they were.”

x
Clearly, not every song on The Winery Dogs is loud and full of feedback. Though each member is known for playing a distinctive style in previous groups, they step outside those boxes here. Bassist Billy Sheehan has gone in many directions in a career that spans over 30 years. Here, he anchors the band with aggressive, classic-rock bass-lines.  Singer-guitarist Richie Kotzen grew up outside of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, a city known for “Philly soul” music. He says that local sound influences the way he sings.

Portnoy is thrilled to be working with them both.

"Billy Sheehan is my favorite bass player on earth and he has been for almost 30 years now. So to work with him and make music with him for me is an honor," he said. "And Richie is someone I have the utmost respect for as an artist. I mean, he is just so underappreciated, not only as a guitarist, but as a singer and a writer as well. I think for me, the most exciting aspect of this band is for people to discover Richie that aren’t aware of what a musical genius he is.”
 
The Winery Dogs spent much of July in Japan and South America.  After a few United States shows, they take a break and then spend September touring Europe, followed by an extensive tour of North America. Details, along with photos, videos and more are on their website, TheWineryDogs.com.

You May Like

UN Ambassador Power Highlights Plight of Women Prisoners

She launches the 'Free the 20' campaign, aimed at profiling women being deprived of their freedom around the world More

Satellite Launch Sparks Spectacular Light Show

A slight delay in a satellite launch lit up the Florida sky early this morning More

Fleeing IS Killings in Syria, Family Reaches Bavaria

Exhausted, scared and under-nourished, Khalil and Maha's tale mirrors those of thousands of refugees from war-torn countries who have left their homes in the hopes of finding a better life More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Nobel Prize Winner Malala Talks to VOAi
X
August 31, 2015 2:17 AM
Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai met with VOA's Deewa service in Washington Sunday to talk about women’s rights and unveil a trailer for her new documentary. VOA's Katherine Gypson has more.
Video

Video Nobel Prize Winner Malala Talks to VOA

Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai met with VOA's Deewa service in Washington Sunday to talk about women’s rights and unveil a trailer for her new documentary. VOA's Katherine Gypson has more.
Video

Video War, Drought Threaten Iraq's Marshlands

Iraq's southern wetlands are in crisis. These areas are the spawning ground for Gulf fisheries, a resting place for migrating wildfowl, and source of livelihood for fishermen and herders. Faith Lapidus has more.
Video

Video Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalates

Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Rebuilding New Orleans' Music Scene

Ten years after Hurricane Katrina inundated New Orleans, threatening to wash away its vibrant musical heritage along with its neighborhoods, the beat goes on. As Bronwyn Benito and Faith Lapidus report, a Musicians' Village is preserving the city's unique sound.
Video

Video In Russia, Auto Industry in Tailspin

Industry insiders say country relies too heavily on imports as inflation cuts too many consumers out of the market. Daniel Schearf has more from Moscow.
Video

Video Scientist Calls Use of Fetal Tissue in Medical Research Essential

An anti-abortion group responsible for secret recordings of workers at a women's health care organization claims the workers shown are offering baby parts for sale, a charge the organization strongly denies. While the selling of fetal tissue is against the law in the United States, abortion and the use of donated fetal tissue for medical research are both legal. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video Next to Iran, Climate at Forefront of Obama Agenda

President Barack Obama this week announced new initiatives aimed at making it easier for Americans to access renewable energy sources such as solar and wind. Obama is not slowing down when it comes to pushing through climate change measures, an issue he says is the greatest threat to the country’s national security. VOA correspondent Aru Pande has more from the White House.
Video

Video Arctic Draws International Competition for Oil

A new geopolitical “Great Game” is underway in earth’s northernmost region, the Arctic, where Russia has claimed a large area for resource development and President Barack Obama recently approved Shell Oil Company’s test-drilling project in an area under U.S. control. Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Philippine Maritime Police: Chinese Fishermen a Threat to Country’s Security

China and the Philippines both claim maritime rights in the South China Sea.  That includes the right to fish in those waters. Jason Strother reports on how the Philippines is catching Chinese nationals it says are illegal poachers. He has the story from Palawan province.
Video

Video China's Spratly Island Building Said to Light Up the Night 'Like A City'

Southeast Asian countries claim China has illegally seized territory in the Spratly islands. It is especially a concern for a Philippine mayor who says Beijing is occupying parts of his municipality. Jason Strother reports from the capital of Palawan province, Puerto Princesa.
Video

Video Ages-old Ice Reveals Secrets of Climate Change

Ice caps don't just exist at the world's poles. There are also tropical ice caps, and the largest sits atop the Peruvian Andes - but it is melting, quickly, and may be gone within the next 20 years. George Putic reports scientists are now rushing to take samples to get at the valuable information about climate change locked in the ice.

VOA Blogs

New in Music Alley

Hamilton Live: Dustbowl Revivali
|| 0:00:00
...  
🔇
X
September 02, 2015 12:19 PM
Dustbowl Revival is an American roots orchestra with eight full-time members who performed live at "The Hamilton" songs from their new CD, "With A Lampshade On."

Dustbowl Revival is an American roots orchestra with eight full-time members who performed live at "The Hamilton" songs from their new CD, "With A Lampshade On."