Interview: Dosh, Minnesota’s favorite one-man band

Dosh & Friends
December 10th is the ninth annual Dosh & Friends show! Dosh will perform with Guitar Party and JT Bates & Anthony Cox, with walk-in music provided by the Guitarkestra of Minnesota. Having been a part of the Minnesota music scene since his early teenage years, Dosh is known for his versatility and unique ability to fill a room as a multi-instrumentalist one man band. We spoke to Dosh in advance of the show, asking him 9 questions, one for every year the Annual Dosh & Friends show has taken place at The Cedar.

Bethel Gessesse, Fall Marketing and Content Intern

Q: You’re known to incorporate your family into your album art and song titles. How has your family inspired your work?
A: Just by being, really.  I find it very difficult to separate the joy and pain and love that comes with having friends and family.  It’s inspiration by osmosis; most of the time a song title is meant to provoke IN ME the memory of something that happened around the time that I made it.  My music is a scrapbook of my life, always has been, and not just with Dosh stuff.
Q: What was the first concert you ever went to?
A: My mom took me to see Pete Seeger and Arlo Guthrie when I was about 7.  The first one I went to without parental accompaniment was George Thorogood and the Delaware Destroyers.  I think I was around 11 or 12.

Q: You’ve toured with many different groups. What has been your favorite tour memory?
A: Playing a festival in the mountains of Japan with Mike Lewis, hands down our best moment playing together.  Truly insane.

Q: Do you have any pre-show rituals?
A: Just make sure that all my gear is working properly.  Easier said than done, but if everything is working, I can relax and play a good set.  Occasionally I’ll jump up and down for a few minutes before I play.

Q: As a multi-instrumentalist, how do you draw from different genres?
A: I have no idea.  I’m a sponge.  I like what I like, and copy and mimic what I like, but I guess my sensibility colors my output quite a bit, because nothing i’m aping sounds like the original source.

Q: What is your go-to restaurant in the Twin Cities?
A: Hands down, Quang. I also love Kyatchi. Their late night happy hour specials on sushi are pretty hard to beat.

Q: In this age of technology, it has become more easy to make beats without necessarily using a standard drum set. How much of your music is reliant on computer-created beats?
A: Zero. I’m all hardware. I swore I would never use a laptop on stage for a Dosh show 15 years ago, and I’ve stuck to that. I guess I’m a Luddite in that sense.

Q: If you could collaborate with anybody, who would it be?
A: Well, they’re all dead.  and I’ve already collaborated with so many people that I never would have thought possible 15 years ago. I guess [from] who’s alive…… hmnnn… probably Bjork, that would be sweet. Or Seun Kuti.

Q: What can fans expect from the 9th Dosh & Friends?
A: Get there early, music starts as doors open at 7, with the Mighty Guitarkestra of Minneapolis playing ambient music til 8, and between bands. It’s a very immersive experience, as you can walk around the room to hear all of the different players.  It’s kind of an installation. This is the 4th year we have done it. JT Bates and Anthony Cox i’m sure will bring the ruckus. Guitar Party will tear it up, if you’ve never seen a 12 year old front a rock band, you should not miss their set. I’ll have a few special guests for my set, but I’m not gonna divulge that information now. The whole thing is always a great community hang, so get down there and have fun! Can’t believe this is the 9th year. Guess I’m old now….

Get tickets for the 9th Annual Dosh and Friends show at The Cedar’s website.