On December 8, 1978, Doug and the Slugs performed their very first live show at Elks Hall, going on to become one of the most distinctive and entertaining bands in Canada. Now 40 years later, the band is ready to relive their glory at the Commodore Ballroom on Saturday, February 2 with very special guest, Jim Byrnes. Tickets for the anniversary show will go on sale Friday, November 9 at 10am.
Not only their 40th anniversary as a band, the February show will be the bands’ 43rd performance at the Commodore Ballroom.
Known for their upbeat musical style, musicianship and off beat stage antics, Doug and the Slugs have been a staple of the Canadian music scene for decades. Originally formed in Vancouver in 1977, the band underwent significant personnel changes before landing on the final lineup of Doug Bennett, John Burton, Simon Kendall, Richard Baker, Steve Bosley and John Wally Watson. Within a few months the Slugs were the hottest attraction in the Vancouver area. In 1979 the band signed with Sam Feldman and with the financial help of Peter McCullough released their first single, Too Bad. The Slugs’ first album ‘Cognac and Bologna’ was released in the fall of 1980 and had other significant radio hits with ‘Chinatown Calculation’ and ‘Drifting Away’.
The rest is history. The Slugs toured relentlessly and went on to produce 6 more albums (4 of them certified Gold) and proved to be a ‘national treasure’. Tragically, on October 16 2004, Canada lost one of its greatest entertainers and songwriters when Doug Bennett passed away. For several years the remaining members did not even consider the idea of continuing without Doug, until Bernie Aubin suggested Ted Okos take the position. Ted and the original band hit it off immediately. Ted’s high energy delivery, and warm, but slightly irreverent stage antics, his keen understanding of the essence of the songs made him the obvious choice for a rebirth of ‘Doug and the Slugs.’