Report: John Doe Live in Santa Monica


The X bassist and solo artist drops in to McCabe’s on Jan. 15 and woww ’em, as usual.

By Jose Martinez

dapper in a black suit, maroon shirt and tie, punk rock legend John Doe looks far removed from his
dangerous and underground days as a founding member of the iconic band X, but that doesn’t mean he still doesn’t
know how to kick ass. Playing two sold out weekend show at McCabe’s, a Santa
Monica beach guitar shop with an intimate 200-seat auditorium lined with
vintage guitars all along the walls, Doe delighted an audience of former
hipsters and punk rockers who now resemble soccer parents busy buying coffee,
cookies and water bottles from the shop’s lobby, but nevertheless reveled in
first-rate, in-your-face Americana rock at its best.


McCabe’s regular performer since 1987, Doe was gearing up for his upcoming
Lincoln Center performance January 28 where he will tackle the American
Songbook as his theme. Believing a show is “like a lotus that will unfold,” Doe
was joined onstage by guitarist Doug Pettibone (Mark Knopfler, Joan Baez, Tracy
Chapman and Jewel) and singer Cindy Wasserman, whose wonderful band Dead Rock West opened, and played newer
songs, including the charming “The Golden
,” as well as crowd favorites from The Knitters (“Someone Like You”
and “The Call of the Wreckin’
and X (“Painting the Town Blue” and “See How We


“At least the CEO of eBay isn’t running our state,” Doe railed on “nitwit
teabaggers” but admitted he knew he was preaching to the choir. Working on a
new release that should hopefully be out by summer, is there anything cooler
than seeing John Doe live in action? While his records may go underappreciated,
onstage, the singer/songwriter who will turn 57 this year, is so personable and
affable and plays such honest and heartfelt music, whether acoustic or backed a
small band, they just don’t make him them like this anymore.





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