Mad Dogs And Englishmen


A Downwarde Spiral Records presentation


Glenn Miller - Accordion
Joseph Porter - Vocals, Acoustic Guitar, Percussion
Gary Miller - Vocals, Acoustic Guitar, Mandolin

Towards the end of 1999 Mad Dogs and Englishmen was formed by Joseph Porter, from our own Blyth Power, and Gary and Glenn Miller from the Whisky Priests. The idea was to put together a collection of songs from both parties that could be played in folk clubs and the kind of smaller venues that are not always amenable to the full band line ups. Mistrusted by large sections of the folk scene on account of their electric instruments and drumkits it seemed a good opportunity to take the work of both songwriters into a new environment with the added advantage that it would be cheap and convenient to operate. We could nip out and back at minimal expense, we reasoned, and play without taking the kind of financial risk involved in gathering up a whole band and packing them into a van.
To promote this project the band went into The Old Dairy studio in York, where an extended recording session eventually resulted in the CD Going Down with Alice, which was released as a joint Whippet/Downwarde Spiral effort in April 2000. Initially rushed out to take along on a Croatian tour, which never materialized, the CD was warmly received. Featuring five songs by Gary Miller and five by Mr Porter it received favourable reviews in the folk press, and even some villainous punk rockers gave it the thumbs up in underground fanzines. Mad Dogs, it seems, were ready to roll.

Things moved fairly slowly from then on in. Commitments to other projects saw it constantly taking a back seat, and the live show never received the attention that was its due. Sporadic support slots with The Whisky Priests and Blyth Power kept the project ticking over, but it never fulfilled the potential that the CD promised.
A handful of dates came together towards the end of 2001, and a tour of Holland followed in November which saw the band finally get its act together - just in time for its demise at the end of the year when the demands of time and energy proved too much for what had always been treated as a second fiddle.
This aside, Going Down with Alice remains as a well produced upbeat piece of music, which all the former members of the trio stand by unreservedly. If we could say the same about every recording we'd made and moved on from then we'd be very happy indeed. You can purchase the CD with the Blyth Power Merchandise Form.

TOP OF PAGE