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Dr. John’s Reconsiderations

Posted in: General by Tom Beaudoin on March 31, 2012

In Friday’s print edition, James McKinley Jr. reported in the New York Times on the new music of Dr. John, including what sounds like a substantial reconsideration of some of the costs of the life he has lived.

Having inhabited a “psychedelic voodoo stage persona” for four decades, Dr. John is ready now to be known by his real name, Mac Rebennack. In religious stories, changes of name are often significant; maybe this change back bears symbolic weight, too. The article is here. It sounds like there is a lot more to the story.

His new album is “Locked Down”:


Tommy Beaudoin, Hastings-on-Hudson, New York


  1. Whan I was performing my solo shows in Atlanta, back in the ’90’s, I went by “Dave Dault,” and I was very clear (in my mind, and to others who were interested) that the extroverted crazy man on stage had very little to do with the quiet and introverted David Dault who inhabited everyday life. That distinction was necessary and important, psychologically. I needed the space of release, but I needed that to have limits. In the early 2000’s, I began performing and recording under ‘David Dault,’ and the music was substantially different. No more crazy man wildness. I think these distinctions are very real, and very important, and very necessary.

    Oddly enough, though, every time I’ve heard Dr. John referred to over the past decade or so, they’ve always acknowledged him as “Mac Rebennack” as well. Even twenty years back, there’s a Keyboard Magazine article I remember where both names were used. So perhaps this is more of a “clean break” with Dr. John altogether. If so, I definitely understand that sentiment,and that need to move on with a fully new persona.

    Anyway, I’ve rambled on enough. Thanks for the link, Tom!

    Comment by Dault — April 1, 2012 @ 10:13 am

  2. Also, I have a covetous desire of all the Telecasters featured in the video.

    Comment by Dault — April 1, 2012 @ 10:16 am

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