Doug Cox Bio



There are world musicians, and there are musicians of the world. In the case of Alberta-born Doug Cox, this extremely talented six-stringer happens to be both. As a young bluesman, this devotee of all-things-with-frets-and-strings had a life-transforming moment over 30 years ago when he first picked up the Dobro. That eerie, slightly plangent music resonated deep in his soul and changed everything.

Always a gifted guitarist, Doug immediately displayed a special affinity for this most expressive of instruments. His talent and passion proved nearly boundless, and before long he was playing and recording with masters such as Ellen McIlwaine and David Essig. Eventually his musical world expanded to include such diverse virtuosos as Indian slide guitarists Vishwa Mohan and Salil Bhatt, Folk Singer/Actor Ronny Cox, dearly departed bluesman Long John Baldry, guitar slinger Amos Garrett, Songwriter Chuck Brodsky and expat Rwandan The Mighty Popo. His own bands and solo recordings display a similarly expansive arc, as the folk-blues of Bone Bottle Brass or Steel eventually led to old-timey supergroup Strung (Band of Gypsies – with Tony McManus and April Verch), New Orleans funk (Make A Better World – featuring John Boutte on Vocals), or countrified Austin Americana in company with BettySoo (Across The Borderline).

Doug has earned innumerable raves, from the BBC’s Bob Harris to magazines such as Guitar Player, he has long been an in-demand player on the Dobro, mandolin, Weissenborn, and the National Steel. His music has been featured on many film and TV soundtracks, including Terry Gilliam's Tideland, A&E's Biography, Coyote Ugly, Steven Seagals: Lawman, Auction Kings, Breaking Amish, Call of the Wildman, Chasing Classic Cars, Anothony Bourdain's No Reservations and TV's Duck Dynasty.

Doug was the first featured Dobro player ever booked by the Montreal Jazz Festival, and the first Canadian invited to play Dobrofest in Trnava in Slovakia, a unique festival set in the birthplace of the Dopyera brothers, the men who invented the Dobro nearly a century ago.

Either as solo performer or as guest artist, or when touring with longtime friends and colleagues, Doug embodies inventiveness and breathtaking musicality. Whether the performance calls for rootsy Americana, New Acoustic, or traditional blues with an African twist, Doug is an intuitive and gracious musical collaborator.

And more than just a performer, Doug is deeply embedded in the entire world of music. Aside from regularly teaching at music camps in Alaska, Texas, and England, he ran his own Malahat Mountain Music label for years and still produces records for the many musical friends he has made along his journey. He is also the producer and artistic director of Vancouver Island MusicFest, which is closing in on its 24th year and has long been one of Canada’s most popular and respected music events.

In 2017, Doug was inducted into the BC Music Hall of Fame as a Pioneer Star for his extensive body of work as a musician and producer. In 2018, he was awarded a place on the Comox Valley Walk of Fame and guested on the Grammy Nominated album by Los Texmaniacs, Cruzando Borders.

Currently, Doug is working with his new trio called Primary Colours (with Kim Richey and Linda McRae) and is planning a new CD with American blues master, Mary Flower.

Doug's worked hard on his art and his craft, and you can hear it when he plays. You can also see it, in the names of the artists he's making music with and the places he's played and when you read between those lines, you know he's earned the respect of his peers and a lot of very happy listeners. He is a catalyst among musicians and artists for many fascinating collaborations.

What a long, strange – and delightful – trip it continues to be!


Doug Cox Discography and Gigs Played


Doug's Selected Discography

Doug's Solo CD Projects

Canadian Borderline 1993

Bone Bottle Brass or Steel 1996

Life Is So Peculiar 1999 (on Cordova Bay/Ragged Pup Records)

Stay Lazy 2002

Without Words 2009 (on Black Hen Label)


with BettySoo

Across The Borderline; Lie To Me  2011

More Lies, 2012 (on Netherland's Continental Label)


with Slide To Freedom 

Slide to Freedom (with guest VM Bhatt)  2007  (on Northern Blues Label)

Make a Better World 2009 (w guest vocalist John Boutte) - 2009 JUNO NOMINEE - WORLD MUSIC ALBUM OF THE YEAR - Named by Downbeat magazine as one of the Top CDs of the Year - (on Northern Blues Label)

20,000 Miles (w guests The Campbell Brothers, Calvin Cook &  BettySoo)  2011 - (on Northern Blues Label)


with Strung (Doug with April Verch, Tony McManus and Cody Walters) 

Band Of Gypsies 2009


 with Sam Hurrie

Hungry Ghosts 2005 (on Northern Blues Label)

Blues From The Forbidden Plateau 2007

Revisited - 2013

Old Friends - 2017 (on Black Hen Label)


with Todd Butler

Live Blues 2002

Dobro and Guitar 2003  (named in top CDs 2003 Acoustic Guitar Magazine)


Select recordings with others

Travels With Charley - all recordings available

The Irish Rovers "The Boys Come Rollin Home" 1994

Will Millar "The Keeper" 1994

Bob Bossin "Gabriola V0R 1X0 " 1994

Ken Hamm "Eagle Rock Road" 1995

Joel Fafard "Fierce Warmth" 1996

Diamond Joe White "Honestly" 1997

Cox-Bartley-Clifford "Highway 20" 1998

Resophonics Anonymous 2000

Six Strings North Of The Border 2001

Michael Messer "King Guitar" 2001

Caring For Our Coast 2001

Hornby Island Blues Camp 2002

Frank Hoorn "Solid Ground" 2002

Rhythm & Green - Cumberland Compilation 2002

Eric Westbury 2003

Rick Henry "Wide Open" 2004

Resophonics Anonymous - Relapse - 2004

Todd Butler - Idle Canadian - 2005

Layla Zoe - Shades of Blue - 2006

Lynne Hanson - Things I Miss - 2006

Frank Hoorn - Years In The Making - 2006

David Essig - Presbyterian Guitar - 2007

Dubblestandart - dub mix - 2007

Lynne Hanson - Eleven Months - 2008

Corinne West - The Promise - 2009

Bill Dalton - Grass Clippings - 2009

MAITRI - 2009

Leela Gilday - Calling All Warriors - 2010

Don Amero - I'm Going Home - 2010

Oh My Darling - In The Lonesome Hours - 2010

The Mighty Popo - Gakondo - 2010 (Juno Nominated) 

Jamyang Yeshi - Demo Project - 2011

The Rakish Angles - Cottonwood Moon - 2011

Amy Cunningham - To The Stars We'll Return - 2011

Shane Koyczan & Short Story Long - Remembrance Year - 2011

Linda McRae - Rough Edges & Ragged Hearts - 2012

Russ Kelley - Crazy Shades Of Blue - 2012

Barry Bruyere - Same Love - 2012

Marilyn Harper Smith - Before The Fall - 2012

Whit Hill - Count A Little Higher - 2012 

Twin Peaks - Twin Peaks - 2012 

Discreet Da Chosen 1 - A Midieval Romance - 2012

A Million Dollars In Pennies - 2012

Leonard Sumner - Rez Poetry - 2013

Familiar Wild - Dark Dreams - 2013

The O'Brien Family - Blue Cottage Music - 2014

Twin Peaks - Trouble - 2014

Peter Prince - Island Way - 2014

Kevin Mitchell - Home In The Sky - 2016

Quantum Tangle - Shelter as we Go - 2017

SantaFe  - Sweet SantaFe  - 2017

Annie Savage & Tracy Lynn - Two Coats - 2017 

Ashley Sykes - Dissonance - 2018

Dan Navarro - Shed My Skin - 2018

John McLachlan - Time Broke - 2018

Los Texmaniacs - Across The Borderline -  2018 (Grammy Nominated)

David Gillis - Walking Away From A Fight - 2018




Some Favorite Gigs...

The Edmonton Folk Festival 1993 with Ken Hamm and Tony Trischka

Silverstar Bluegrass Festival 1993 with Slavik Hanzlik

Summerfolk, Owen Sound Folk Festival 1994 with Travels With Charley

Regina Folk Festival 1995 with the Ken Hamm Trio

The Vancouver Folk Festival 1995

The Yellow Door - Montreal, PQ - 1996

The Harbourfront Centre Molson Stage - Toronto, ON - 1996, 1997 (Blues Fest)

The Freight and Salvage - San Francisco, CA - 1997

The (1st) Stan Rogers Folk Festival - Canso, Nova Scotia - 1997

The Calgary Folk Festival - Calgary, Alberta (got to play w Jerry Douglas) - 1998

The Jasper Folk Festival - Jasper, Alberta - 1998

The World Next Door Festival - Winnipeg, Manitoba - 1998

The Baseball Hall Of Fame, Cooperstown, NY. with Chuck Brodsky - 1998

Fast Folk Cafe - New York City - 1998

The Ottawa Folk Festival w Rick Fines - 1999

The North Country Fair, Joussard, AB - 1999, 2001, 2003

The Kerreville Wine and Music Festival, Kerreville, Texas - 1999

The Victoria Roots Festival (got to play with Lindley!), 2000

The Winnipeg Folk Festival, 2001

The Dawson City Music Festival, 2001

The Edmonton Folk Festival,(got to play w D'Gary, Corey Harris & Amadou Et Marium) 2002

Long John Baldry's Birthday Bash, Vancouver, BC 2003

The Montreal Jazz Festival with Todd Butler, 2003

The Salmon Arm Roots and Blues Festival, 2003

Prince George Folk Festival, 2004

Sore Fingers Teachers Concert with Tim O'Brien, Darryl Scott and others - The Cotswolds, England 2005

The Dream Cafe in Penticton - with Amos Garrett 2005

The Epcor Center For the Arts in Calgary, Alberta with Sam Hurrie 2005

The Vancouver Folk Festival Collabatory (concerts w Ganesh Ananden) (wkshop w Mike Seeger and Utah Phillips) 2005

The Edmonton Folk Festival with Sam Hurrie 2005

La Grande rencontre 2005 Parc Lafontaine in Montréal - with Sam Hurrie and Keith Bennett 2005

Sore Fingers 2006 - played with (Zeppelin's) John Paul Jones!

House Concert, Perth, Ontario, 2006 w Sam Hurrie

Blacksheep Inn - Wakefield, Quebec w Sam Hurrie - 06

Northern Lights Folk Club, Edmonton, Ab w Sam Hurrie - 06

Saxon Pub, Austin, TX, w Sam Hurrie - 06

South Country Fair w Sam Hurrie, Vihswa Mohan Bhatt, Salil Bhatt, Ramkumar Mishra - 06

The Calgary Folk Festival w Sam Hurrie - 06

Maine Island w Ken Hamm & David Essig - 06

Ulm, Germany w Sam Hurrie- 07

Tournai, Belgium w Sam Hurrie - 07

Bowen Island w Spider & Jeanne Robinson, Corbin Keep & Rene Worst - 07

Festival Place in Sherwood Park w Strung - 08

Regina Casino w Strung - 08

Hugh's Room in Toronto w Slide to Freedom - 08

The Epcor Centre in Calgary w Slide To Freedom - 08

Stan Rogers Folk Festival - 08

Vancouver Folk Festival - 08

Ottawa Folk Festival - 08

Margaret Greenham Theatre in Banff, AB w Fathers and Sons - 08

Bibao Spain w Corinne West - 09

Celtic Connections in Glasgow, Scotland w Strung - 09

Cromarty, Scotland w Corinne West - 09

Chatanooga, TN , Riverbend Festival - 09

Shrewsbury Folk Festival, UK w Corinne West - 09

Cornish Bgrass Festival , UK, w Corinne West - 09

The Sooke Folk Club w Anela Kahiamoe - 10

Olympic Gigs w Anela Kahiamoe and the New Native Review - 10

The Juno Awards w Dinah D - 10

The Vancouver Jazz Fest at the Commodore w STF - 10

Canada Day In Calgary w STF - 10

Dream Cafe in Penticton w STF - 10

Musicfest w Dan Hicks and STF! - 10

Ottawa Blues Fest w STF - 10 

Komasket Fest with the Pacific Poi Boys - 10

Chicago World Music Festival with STF - 10

The Cactus Cafe in Austin w BettySoo - 10 

Joes Garage with Matt Epp - 10

SXSW Gig, Saxon Pub with BettySoo Band - 11

Austin Airport - Ray Benson Stage - with Bob Livingston - 11

Atlanta, GA - Dogwood Festival w BettySoo - 11

Lexington Kentucky - Woodsongs Oldtime Radio Hour - w BettySoo - 11

Tours in Italy, UK, Netherlands, Belgium w BettySoo - 11

Minnesota State Fair - Texas on Tour -  w BettySoo - 11

Oklahoma City - The Blue Door - Tribute to Woody Guthrie - w BettySoo - 11

Bethlehem, PA - Godfrey Daniels Folk Club with BettySoo - 2012

Memphis, TN - Folk Alliance Performances with Sam Baker - 2013

The Congress - Victoria, BC (re-uniting with Sam Hurrie) - 2013

Kansas City - Tour and FA Performances with Ronny Cox and with Sam Baker - 2014

Vancouver Island - Back To The Garden Concerts - 2014

Vancouver Island - shows with Kit Eakle and Michael Dunn - 2014

DriftPile, AB - The North Country Fair - 2014

Kispiox, BC - The Kispiox Festival - 2014

Italy shows with Beppe Gambetta and Jack Lawrence - 2014

Colorado Shows with Ronny Cox - Sept. , 2014

Gig with Tom Paxton in Courtenay, BC - 2015

Sidewalk Blues Band Reunion Gigs - 2015

Islands Folk Festival duo gig with Radoslav Lorkovic - 2015

Tofino gigs with Sam Hurrie - 2015

Starman - Celebrating the Songs of David Bowie Shows - 2015/16

Mighty String Thing Shows with Cecile´ Doo-Kingue´, Kevin Breit, Bill Kirchen, Mark Stuart and Sam Hurrie - 2016

Banff Centre Concerts 2016/17

Opening for the Mavericks in Nanaimo -2017 

Weekly Gigs at The Cumberland - 2017 

MST Gigs with Cecile Doo-Kingue, Celso Machado, Max Baca , Sam Hurrie and Noel Hernandez - 2017 

Islands Folk Fest with Linda McRae - 2017

Butchart Gardens w Sam Hurrie - 2017 

Rogue Folk with Mary Flower - 2018

North Country Fair and Mission Folk with Sam Hurrie - 2018

Owen Sound SummerFolk with the Primary Colours - 2018