The Dog Meat BBQ FAQ
(foolishly asked questions)
1. The basics
2. Other bands the Dog Meat BBQ crew have
4. Questions about songs
5. Why haven't you answered my question?
1. The basics
1.1. Who's in Dog Meat BBQ?
The line-up is:
1.2. Who else has played in the BBQ?
Three different drummers have filled in at gigs when Justin was
unavaliable. They are: Danny Thomas (played at the first Dog Meat
BBQ gig in 1986), Des Walsh (one gig at the BIS Club in 1987) and
Bruce Cooper (one gig at the Cornerstone in 1987).
1.3. Where'd you get that freaky name?
When the band first formed in the summer of 1986, they had a hell
of a job coming up with a name. Sobriquets tossed around at the
time included "Batjam", "Psuedo and the Quasis" and, if memory
serves correctly, "Three Hail Marys, a Coke and a Bag of Chips".
For their first gig, the 1986 Peace-a-Chord, they appeared on the
program as "Backstreet Jihad". But mere hours before the gig, fate
intervened. In Wallace's mailbox that morning was found a stack of
propaganda from the International Fund for Animal Welfare. Seems
they were out to put a stop to the practice of eating dogs and cats
in South Korea, and were in full-on money-begging mode. And there
amid their mountains of Eurocentric hogwash appreared the phrase
"dog meat barbeque". That was it - the band had a name.
1.4. Who is Dr. Cod?
In it's early days, the band was sometimes known as "Dr. Cod's
International Dog Meat Barbiequeue". Here's the story: Once upon a
time, Mike was a deejay and sportscaster at CHMR, the campus radio
station at Memorial University of Newfoundland. For some of this
time, and for reasons we can't go into here, he was forced to adopt
a psuedonym. Thus he morphed into the dangerously demented "Dr.
Cod". The name originated during experiments with certain mind-
altering substances on a road trip to Conception Bay North in 1979
(shout-outs to Roger, Willard and Abner on this one!). The very
deep and arcane significance of the name cannot be revealed to the
general public. Meanwhile, for some unknown reason (mind-altering
substances again suspected), certain media types have chosen to
render the name as "Dr. God". Yeah.
2. Related bands
2.1. Who are The Bubonic Plague?
The Bubonic Plague was a band which Mike and Wallace played in from
1982 to 1985 in St. John's and Toronto. Tony, Justin and Craig also
appeared with the Plague at various points. The band released two
cassette tapes, Wild Wild Youth in Asia (1983) and Smile
- Think Positive (1984). A number Bubonic Plague songs found
their way into the Dog Meat BBQ repertoire. These include "Freakin
at the High School Hop", "Tenth Rate Band", "I'm On Drugs", "Modern
Diseases", ""Oh Columbus", "Imperial Birds", "Guiseppe, Are You
Dead?" and "Wild Wild Youth in Asia". As well, three Plague songs,
"Meat Wars", "Nuclear Baby Rag" and "I Hate My Job", have been re-
recorded for Dog Meat BBQ releases. Ckeck out The Bubonic Plague Page.
2.2. Who are Da Slyme?
Da Slyme were Newfoundland's first punk rock band, formed in 1978
with a line-up that included Wallace ("Kirt Sic-o-via"), Justin
("Dead Beat"), Craig ("No Moniker") and Tony ("Roscoe Santiago").
For the full poop on this ground-breaking (and bottle-breaking)
band, who recently released a new CD entitled The 20 Year
Scam, check their website at www.slyme.com. Four songs on Dog
Meat BBQ's Dead Dogs of the Summer of Love originated as
Slyme tunes: "No Talent", "Political Clout", "Running from the
Weapons of War" and "Arriva Derci Roma". "I Hate My Job" was
intitially performed by Da Slyme, though its first recorded
appearance was on the Bubonic Plague's Smile - Think
Positive. A number of Slyme songs have been performed live by
Dog Meat BBQ, including "Crazy Glue", "Defecation on the Nation",
"My Mind is Shot", "Truck Stop Nun" and "Newfie Rastaman".
2.3. Who are The A-Tones?
The A-Tones were a Slyme spin-off band which included Wallace,
Tony, Justin and Craig, along with Terry Carter. They did several
live shows in 1980 and released a cassette, The Quick and the
Dead, in 1983 (check out the cover of
this tape). Best known for recording the song "Middle Cove Beach
Party" with local blooze-meister Roger Howse. For more information
on The A-Tones, as well as predecessors The Infideltones and The
Semi-Tones, see the history section of Da Slyme's website.
2.4. Who are Wet Cheese Delerium?
Wet Cheese Delerium are an electronic/experimental band in which
Wallace and Craig have played for more than 20 years. Details on
the history of Wet Cheese Delerium can be found at Da Slyme's website. In recent
years, Doug has also played with WCD. The band have released 5
cassettes: Live at Bar None (1990), Bottle (1996),
Take This Tape to the End of the World (1996),
Destination (1996), and Gathering Electric Swarms
(1997). On three occasions, in 1982, 1983 and 1998, WCD have backed
up Mike for electronic poetry readings. Check out a poster and pictures of
the 1982 show, and a poster for the 1998
2.5. Who are The Black Auks?
Wallace and Craig are also members of The Black Auks, an
improvisational group formed in the 1980s. So far there have been
3 Black Auks releases: Cape Spear Passages (1994),
Auking (1996) and No Second Takes (1998).
2.6. Who are The Real Fat Elvis and tbe Kountry
The Real Fat Elvis and the Kountry Klingons were an "unplugged"
version of Dog Meat BBQ, featuring Mike, Wallace, Tony and Duncan.
This group played live twice in 1987 at Kibitzers and at Bounders.
Most of the Klingons' repertoire was culled from the four Holy Folk tapes released by Vikki-Beat
between 1984 and 1988. "The Rocks of Ireland's Eye", recorded by
Dog Meat BBQ on Close Enough for Rock & Roll, was first
performed by the Klingons. Check out a poster and pictures from the Kibitzers gig.
2.7. Who are The Groovy Shitheads, Kow Kudd
Kasserole and The Last Gang
These were names used by a series of bands that members of Dog Meat
BBQ played in after Dog Meat's 1988 demise. With rotating line-ups
that included Mike, Tony, Duncan, Justin, Barry Newhook, Don Ellis
and Clark Hancock, these bands played a large number of gigs,
mostly at the late and lamented Bar None, in 1989 and 1990. Other
people may also have played in these bands - our memories are a bit
dim on this, as consideable quantities of beer were involved. If
you played with us or know someone who did, please contact the
webmaster. Shithead/Kow Kudd/Last Gang originals, later recorded by
Dog Meat BBQ, included "Sodomy in Georgia", "Jim Bakker's Lobotomy"
and "Country Chicken".
2.8. Who are 2000 Perforations?
2000 Perforations were an acoustic duo, consisting
of Mike and Tony, who played a large number of bar gigs in 1990 and 1991.
They were later joined by Duncan and, renaming themselves The Mental
Rednecks, played a single show in June 1991. They subsequently
became The Hangin' Tree-O. Original songs by 2000 Perforations
included "Monster Truck Challenge", "1-800", "Michael Jackson",
"Mangy a Trois", "On the Banks of Old Gitchee Gummee", "One More
Song About Chickens" and "Pee-Wee's Big Adventure".
UPDATE: 2000 Perforations re-emerged
from the nether regions in May 2000 and are once again wreaking havoc
on the St. John's pub scene. Heavy casualties have been reported.
Stay tuned for further developments.
2.9. Who are Dr. Cod's Psychedelic Stew?
Formed to play at the Peace-a-Chord in the summer of 1990, this
one-shot band consisted of Mike, Tony, Duncan, Justin, Don Ellis,
Clark Hancock and Jim Fidler. (Check out some pictures from this gig. The band had initially
been called "Picnic of Death", but the name was changed just prior
to the Peace-a-Chord. Shortly afterward, in September 1990, Mike,
Tony and Jim recorded the song "Stuck Between Iraq and a Hard
Place," credited to Dr. Cod, Roscoe and the Jim Fidler Jugband,
which reached the No. 1 position on the CHMR-FM chart.
2.10. Who are the Hangin' Tree-O?
The Hangin' Tree-O, who took their name from a song by Norton
Buffalo, consisted of Tony, Duncan and Mike. The name was adopted
in 1990 and used several times thereafter. The Hangin' Tree-O (and
friends, including Justin) played at the Peace-a-Chord in 1991,
doing a set which included a 10-minute version of Johnny Cash's
"Ring of Fire". The most recent appearance by the Hangin' Tree-O
was at the Brimstone Head Folk Festival on Fogo Island in 1996.
Check out a picture of The Hangin' Tree-O
playing at a rally for the Women's Centre on a very cold day
in Bannerman Park.
2.11. Who are The Garden of Heathens?
Tony, Duncan and Mike, together with members of local death-metal
band Necropolis, performed one gig at the LSPU Hall in the summer
of 1995 under the name "The Garden of Heathens". During their
second set, they were joined by Wallace for a couple of tunes. This
led eventually to the re-formation of Dog Meat BBQ for a reunion
gig in December 1995.
2.12. Who are The Incredible Floating
Named after the plastic thingamajig in a can of Guiness, The
Incredible Floating Widgets, consisting of Mike, Tony and bassist
Robert Kelly (of the folk group Middle Tickle), appeared at the
Brimstone Head Folk Festival on Fogo Island in 1999. Songs
performed by the Widgets included "The Rocks of Ireland's Eye",
"The Evil Drunks" and "Baboon". The children of Fogo were suitably
impressed. Expect trouble down the road when they hit their teens.
3.1. Just how many recordings have you guys
A bunch. So far there have been three official Dog Meat BBQ
Besides these three Dog Meat BBQ releases, members of the band have
been involved in numerous other projects. Wallace in particular has
appeared in one capacity or another on about 30 different
cassettes, LPs an CDs.
- Dead Dogs of the Summer of Love (Vikki-Beat, 1987)
- Hang Up Yer Raw Hides (Vikki-Beat, 1997)
- Close Enough for Rock & Roll (Flub & Dub,
3.2. What's a Vikki-Beat?
Vikki-Beat is the name of a recording label founded by members of
the Bubonic Plague in 1983. Like many punk rockers of the early
80s, the Plague wasn't satisfied with a status quo in which
musicians had to either bend over for corporate hacks or have their
music go unheard. So, at the suggestion of drummer Terry Carter,
they started their own cassette-only label to release their music
and that of some of their friends. The following explanation of the
Vikki-Beat philosophy appeared in the booklet accompanying the
Label's first release, the Plague's Wild Wild Youth in Asia:
The Vikki-Beat label was conceived as a means of
making available original music (?) which might otherwise have
been lost in the proverbial shuffle. The aim is to provide at
the lowest possible cost and maybe at the best quality (?) we
can muster, material unavailable through normal channels, i.e.
access to the excess. Therefore we hope you can excuse the odd
bit of hiss, and we hope you will be pleasantly surprised at
the level of production attained.
Vikki-Beat took its name from Victoria Street in downtown St.
John's, where Wallace's home recording studio is located (the name
was suggested by Adrian of Phil 'n the Blank), and John O'Brien
(Mike's brother) designed the official Vikki-
Beat logo. Early Vikki-Beat releases were accompanied by
illustrated booklets and sold in zip-lock bags [Instructions: "Open
bag, Take tape out of bag. Place tape in player. Fill bag with
glue. Press Play. Inhale. Enjoy."]. The first tape sold
surprisingly well, so more were made, including the first two Dog
Meat BBQ releases, Dead Dogs of the Summer of Love and
Hang Up Yer Raw Hides. Other artists who released tapes on
the VikkiBeat label include The A-Tones, The Reaction, Big Tears,
Nina Patey, Jim Payne, and The Stolen Bones. The most recent
release was Seeing Double (1998), a compilation of the two
Bubonic Plague releases. A complete list of Vikki-Beat tapes can be
3.3. What are the "Holy Folk" Tapes?
In late 1983 the major culprits behind Vikki-Beat hatched what was
then a novel idea: have a punk band play songs on (mostly) acoustic
instruments. Experiments in "unplugged" music (we called it
"campfire music" in those days!) by the Bubonic Plague and later by
Dog Meat BBQ were released by Vikki-Beat on a series of four
cassettes, dubbed the "Holy Folk" tapes (say it out loud). To make
a weird concept even weirder, all the songs on the tapes were
credited to different "artists", with names like The Oval Orifice,
The Sacrificial Yams, The Cuntree Cowfreaks, Cosa Nostra Damus, and
so forth. The four tapes produced are:
None of these tapes sold more than a few dozen copies, and all are
now out of print and extremely rare. Movements may be afoot,
however, to put some "Holy Folk" highlights out on a CD. Many of
the songs from the tapes were performed live by Der Kampfire
Boobonic Plague and later by The Real Fat Elvis and the Kountry
Klingons. As well, several early versions of some Dog Meat BBQ
songs first appreared as "Holy Folk" jobbies. These include "Star
Kist Tunie", "Wilbur", "Tory from Muskoka", and "The Beer Drinking
Rap". For the complete "Holy Folk" discography, click here.
- Don't Quit Yer Day Job (1984)
- 13 Brand New Yeehaws (1986)
- Dead Men Don't Yodel (1987)
- Off the Beaten Tracks (1988)
3.4. What's an Underground Stream?
Underground Stream is the label the Wet Cheese Delerium (see section 2.4) records on.
3.5. What compilations have Dog Meat BBQ appeared
Just one so far. The band's verion of Peter
Narvaez's "Freedom to Freak Out" was included in the CD
Cover Story: 15 Newfoundland Bands cover 15 Newfoundland
Classics, released by Alice Productions in 1998.
3.6. Has anyone covered any Dog Meat BBQ
Yes. Fur-Packed Action covered
"Dance of the Flaming Assholes" on the afore-mentioned Cover
3.7. Where can I buy your recordings?
Currently, only the Dog Meat BBQ's latest CD, Close Enough for
Rock & Roll, is available online. Click
here to see how
you can buy it. We're working on making some of our other
recordings available in the near future.
4. Questions about songs
4.1. Wasn't there a movie called "Twisted
Yes. Also known as "Horror High", "Twisted Brain" was a 1974 turkey
in which your typical high school nerd drinks a serum which turns
him some kind of monster which devours jocks, cheerleaders and so
forth. Unbelievably bad. Mike saw this movie on late-night TV back
around 1979, and wrote the song a few years later.
4.2. Who are those people mentioned in "Star Kist
Five of them were members of Canadian Prime Minister Brian
Mulroney's cabinet between 1984 and 1986. International Trade
Minister Pat Carney was one of the main instigators behind the Free
Trade Agreement between Canada and the United States. Defence
Minister Robert Coates resigned in February 1985 when he was deemed
to have become a "security risk" after visiting a West German strip
club. Communications Minister Marcel Masse resigned in September
1985 over allegations of electoral fraud; he was subsequently
reinstated. Environment Minister Suzanne Blais-Grenier,
"universally regarded as a walking disaster" according to
journalist Jeffrey Simpson, resigned in 1985 following allegations
that she had taken European holidays at taxpayers' expense. "Sinc"
was Industry Minister Sinclair Stevens, who resigned in May 1986
over conflict of interest allegations. Richard "Disco Dick"
Hatfield, Conservative Prime Minister of New Brunswick, was
arrested on drug charges when 28 grams of marijuana was found in
his suitcase while he was travelling on a jet in the company of the
Queen. Hatfield, who clained he didn't know how the pot got there,
was later acquitted. The title "Star Kist Tunie" refers to the
infamous "tainted tuna" scandal, in which one million tins of
rancid tuna, which government inspectors had declared unfit for
human consumption, ended up on Canadian supermarket shelves. This
led to the September 1985 resignation of Fisheries Minister John
Fraser who, at Hatfield's urging, had over-ruled his own inspectors
and allowed the sale of the tuna. You might think that Dog Meat BBQ
are some kinda loonies, but...
4.3. Who's the Naomi in
Some people have asked about the identity of the Naomi mentioned in
"Cruisin". No, it isn't Naomi Judd. Here's the story: In 1985,
while Mike was residing in the murky depths of Parkdale, Toronto,
one of his house-mates worked in an upscale downtown bookstore.
After remarking several times on the bizarre nature of some of the
books sold there, she brought one home to show Mike. It was a gay
pornographic novel entitled Nam Vet, in which a young
draftee, on arriving in the Nam, discovers that his Sergeant other
things than killin' Commies on his mind. Entranced by the Sarge's
"delectible bunghole" (that's how the book put it), our young hero
forsakes his sweetheart back home, whose name was, you guessed it,
Naomi. At this time, Mike was writing "Cruisin", and the name sort
of, er, slipped in. This is proof positive that anything can
end up in a Dog Meat BBQ song.
4.4. What is/are "C, D & G"?
"C, D & G" is Chips, Dressing and Gravy, a Newfoundland "delicacy"
consisting of french fries served with fake stuffing and even faker
gravy. Best enjoyed after consuming large quantities of local brew.
The places metioned in the song are well-known St. John's fast-food
joints, some of which, alas, are no longer with us. Perhaps
coincidentally, the chord progression for the song is: C, D and G.
4.5. What is the Radical Looney Ha Ha Ha
The Radical Looney Ha Ha Ha Party is a political organization which
began as a skit on the CMHR comedy show Issues in the Loo.
It is also known as "The Party of the Common Drunks", and its
policies clearly distinguished it from the pack. Under Radical
Looneyism, for instance, it will be illegal to drive sober. After
the party made a dismal showing in an election in the early 1970s,
some of its adherents saw the Harbour Light - some just saw the
harbour. "Political Clout" is a
tribute to Radical Looneyism and
all that it stands for (and against).
4.6. What's with "Sodomy in
In the state of Georgia, consensual oral sex is illegal under a so-
called "Sodomy Law". Mike wrote the lyrics after reading a
newspaper story about a man who was sent to prison for having oral
sex with his wife. Only in America, you say? I'd say somebody's
pretty damn lucky he's from Arkansas.
4.7. Is there really a
"Bob's Donuts and Firing Range"?
Yes. It's in Rapid City, South Dakota.
4.8. Who is/was
This song was written during The Bubonic Plague's foray in Toronto,
where Wallace worked for awhile in a shoe polish factory/aerosol
plant. Object lesson here: quit your day job before it's too late.
The name "Wilbur", incidentally, was nicked from the 1951 Abbott
and Costello movie Comin' Round the Mountain.
4.9. Who was the original
"Tory from Muskoka"?
Frank Miller, a used car salesman from Bracebridge in Muskoka
County, became Conservative Premier of Ontario in February 1985.
Four months later, his "Big Blue Machine" was defeated in a general
election, ending 42 years of Tory rule. The Ontario Tories returned
to power in June 1995 under the leadership of Mike Harris, a former
golf pro from Nipissing County, barely a stone's throw from
4.10. What's the story behind
"Clar Riley's Rathole"?
One night, when Wallace was doing sound at a bar on the infamous
George Street strip in St. John's, he looked out the window and saw
some guy in a suit rolling around in the gutter. This inspired him
to write a somg about every bar we've ever been in. Some of it may
even be true.
4.11. Who are the "500 fishers" in
"The Boats that Joey Couldn't Burn"?
The initial contingent of Newfoundlanders sent overseas in 1914 to
fight the First World War were popularly known as "The First Five
Hundred". Many of these men were killed by German machine-gun fire
during an attack on the French village of Beaumont Hamel on 1 July
1916, the first day of the Battle of the Somme. You can read more
about it here.
4.12. Who was the SS con-man?
He was Dr. Alfred Valdmanis, a former Nazi collaborator from
Latvia, who was appointed Newfoundland's Director-General of
Economic Development by Premier Joey Smallwood in 1950. Valdmanis,
who had been recommended for the post by famed Canadian economist
C.D. Howe, was convicted of fraud (to the tune of about $500,000)
in 1954. Smallwood had promised Newfoundlanders that, once
Valdmanis's schemes for industrial development were implemented,
they could "burn their boats" - hence the song's title. You can
read the whole story here.
4.13. Where is "Ireland's Eye"
Ireland's Eye is a small island in Trinity Bay, Newfoundland. In
the November 1987, it was the site of what was then the largest-
ever drug bust in Canadian history. About 15 tonnes of hash was
allegedly meant to be smuggled to Montreal hidden in a semi-load of
onions. The case dragged on for years; no convictions resulted.
4.14. What is "The Moon Opera"?
Meant to be part of the never-released fifth tape in the "Holy
Folk" series, "The Moon Opera" was recorded in early 1988. It tells
the story of a poor sap who, while drowning his sorrows in a bar,
accidentally swallows a miniaturized alien space-ship, and in a
"bizarre transformation" ends up being whisked off to the moon for
further drunken adventures. One of the movements of this opera,
"Lunar Detox", was re-recorded for Close Enough for Rock &
4.15. What is "BSE"?
BSE is Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy, commonly known as "Mad Cow
Disease". You can read more about it here.
4.16. What's this about a "Beer Drinking Rap"
When "The Beer Drinking Rap" was recorded for the Dead Men Don't
Yodel compilation tape, the boys thought it would be the
perfect subject for their first DIY video. Armed with a borrowed
camcorder, a couple of two-fours of beer, an intitutional-sized can
of beans and sundry other props, Mike, Wallace and Tony proceeded
to demolish the back room of Wallace's house while the videotape
rolled. Definitely a classic of some sort. Some very obscene
gestures by a ski-masked and clearly unbalanced Mike effectively
scotched any chance of this ever appearing on television. It did
get played a few times at the Cornerstone, though.
4.17. Wasn't there a movie called "Lust for a
Yes, and it's a classic. Lust for a Vampire was released by
Hammer Films in 1971. Directed by Jimmy Sangster, the film stars
Yutte Stensgaard as Mircalla the vampire, who wreaks havoc at an
all-girls finishing school. This is definitely the Citizen
Kane of lesbian vampire movies. The film was a sequel to
Hammer's The Vampire Lovers (1970), which was based on J.
Sheridan le Fanu's classic story "Carmilla" (1871).
4.18. What is "Santa's Last Ride"?
"Santa's Last Ride" is a punk/disco (?!?!?) Xmas carol first
performed by the Bubonic Plague in 1983. Dog Meat BBQ recorded the
song in 1987 and made a DIY video to go along with it.
5. Why haven't you answered my question?
Probably because you haven't asked it yet. If you have a question,
e-mail Mike at
email@example.com, and we'll try to get it up on a
later version of this FAQ.
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