It is beginning to look like John Doe is taking Warren Zevon’s song “I’ll Sleep When I’m Dead” to heart… The co-founder and frontman of L.A. punk band X has been burning the candle at both ends for the past few years. He has co-authored Under the Big Black Sun: A Personal History of L.A. Punk, a new book about the history of L.A. punk, released his brilliant new solo album, The westerner, and toured relentlessly with a multitude of solo dates as well as continuing to play shows with X. Doe, who brought his Rock-N-Roll Band to Cat’s Cradle this past summer, returned recently for an intimate solo performance.
Starting off the evening’s proceedings was local singer-songwriter Django Haskins. Haskins who is also the frontman of Chapel Hill-based orchestral pop outfit The Old Ceremony, played a stripped down solo acoustic set that was wildly entertaining. He even explained to the room that he felt the need to write something new just for the show tonight before playing a hilarious and catchy new song about a certain little man with tiny hands who lives in a big white house.
John Doe walked to the center of a sparse stage that consisted of little more than a couple of guitars, and amp and a music stand. His charm was evident from the start as he engaged the crowd with good natured banter before kicking off an eclectic set that pulled from his solo work, some X songs, and even had a few covers mixed in. Doe chatted between songs, telling stories and taking requests from the crowd. Whether performing with X, backed by his Rock-N-Roll Band, or putting on a one-man show, John Doe is a consummate singer, songwriter, and multi-talented performer, his shows are always a “do not miss” affair.