Dave Shogren, one of the original founding members of the rock group the Doobie Brothers, died in his sleep Tuesday (Dec. 14, 1999) at his home in California. He was 49.
Mr. Shogren, whose solid bass lines imprinted the music of the early Doobie Brothers, spent a lot of time last year in Palm Harbor while working with his manager and producer, Paul Curcio of Palm Harbor, establishing the group that agreed to call itself SMB - Former Doobie Brothers Performing the hits of the Doobie Brothers.
The name is what a U.S. district judge in Orlando determined was legal after banning the three former members of the Doobie Brothers from using the name of the rock band. Mr. Shogren, Skip McCracken and Cornelius Bumpus had been billing themselves as "The Original Doobie Brothers" to book and promote shows, until Curcio and his business were sued last August for using the name. An injunction was issued Aug. 25.
According to Curcio, Mr. Shogren's "health was excellent. His father told me when he phoned me with the news that they think it was pneumonia. Dave called me a few days ago. He sounded awful, said he had been suffering from a bad viral infection for a few days."
Dave Cary, co-owner of Club More in Clearwater, recalled the reformed band's impromptu concert there last September as very successful.
"They had them dancing in the aisles," he said. "With only 24 hours notice and word of mouth, they packed the place. Everybody was singing along with the old Doobie hits," Cary said.
The local rock club opened their stage for the former Doobies after their manager called to say he had had to cancel an outdoor concert at Dunedin Stadium due to inclement weather.
According to Carey, the group "had already hired a video crew and needed a place to film a video scheduled to be released with their CD in Europe. It worked out great for everybody."
Mr. Shogren was there for the beginnings of the Doobie Brothers, the group that defined a new era with its bluesy street-rock sound. In 1970, along with Tom Johnston and John Hartman, Mr. Shogren founded the biker-bar band from the San Francisco Bay area.
Mr. Shogren was with the group only for its first LP, The Doobie Brothers, which came out in 1971. The group's first commercial hits came in later albums. Listen to the Music, a song written by Johnston, followed by China Grove and Long Train Runnin' were some of the Doobie Brothers' top hits.
After leaving the original band, Mr. Shogren remained active in the recording industry and owned a studio for many years in California. From 1993-1995, he teamed with author Brad Feager to publish Parrot Audio Books. Altogether, they published 12 books, including autobiographies of Burt Reynolds and John Denver, narrated by the stars. They did the 20th anniversary audio for The Exorcist and Flowers for Algernon.
In 1996, Mr. Shogren reunited with Curcio to record an album of the Doobies greatest hits along with other former members McCracken and Bumpus. This year, they headlined at many of the country's folk festivals, recently finished a new CD in Palm Harbor and were making plans for a European tour.