\"...it is empowered and, somehow, it seems new despite its deep roots.\" -Jeff Miller, L.A. Times
McDougall has been recording since the age of thirteen when he figured out how to overdub multiple instruments on his dad’s dual tape-deck in the garage. Since then he has recorded and played with a good many bands and at present is a member of a selection of groups including the gritty punk-blues duo/trio The Glassell Park 3, multi-instrumental stomp-and-holler duo The Stumptown Strugglers, and R. Tussing’s Galvanized Junk Band. With a family music history including his mother, grandmother and grandfather playing old-time hymns in prison camps and skid-row missions in the 1950’s and 60’s, McDougall has always had people at the forefront of his musical ambitions. In high school it was a way to burn off some creative and physical energy with friends after school, later on it became a way to forge a sense of community and now it has also become an effective way to share human experiences and tales with other common folks like himself. This is where he finds his solo endeavors – drawing inspiration from writers such as Shane MacGowan, Tom Waits, Steve Earle and Woody Guthrie and musical inspirations from those, as well as the likes of Leadbelly and Jon Patrick Foshee, McDougall does his best to paint pictures of the not-so-ordinary experiences of everyday people, using a variety of acoustic instruments (guit-jo, 5-string and Irish tenor banjo, various guitars and mandolin) to create the backdrop.
With his imagination often dwelling in the very real places of his past and present, as well as in the possible future, McDougall’s songs may very well seat you by a coffee-can fire in the middle of a dry California river-bed, pull you up onto a freight train in the lush spring-time of the Pacific northwest, raise your voice in hymns with the entire family on a Thanksgiving afternoon, or haste your good-bye to civilization as you know it, as you ramble on with all you possess on your back. Fact, fiction, and a little in between, McDougall carries on the relevant tradition of oral history and folklore, making it a part of everyday life and sharing it with those around him. Inspired by the word of God, his family, friends, fellow workers and fellow travelers met along the way, McDougall wishes to keep to the unwritten rule of using what was left by those before while leaving something of your own for those who will come after.