City Paper is not for tourists
Talking to Michael Dolan, you get the feeling that maybe anything is possible with an Obama Administration coming in.
“My band played an inaugural ball!” says Michael Dolan. “Being a Washingtonian, it doesn’t get any better than that.”
Dolan (Gonzaga College High School Class of ’68) is a writer of books and TV scripts, and, nearest and dearest to me, a former Washington City Paper writer.
He, in fact, wrote the most famous or infamous story City Paper has ever published, a 1987 muckrake that revealed the video rental habits of Supreme Court nominee Robert Bork. Federal privacy laws were actually changed because of Dolan’s piece.
Dolan moved on from City Paper to other writing gigs a long time ago. And rather recently, he took up playing the bass when his kid went off to college and he found he had some free time. He and some friends get together to pluck various combinations of G/C/D as the house band at a farmer’s market in Palisades.
As can happen, Dolan caught the playing out bug. So as an offshoot of his street-performance combo, Dolan formed a large indoor, R&B flavored combo named WMD.
Dolan’s the “D.” The “M” is his pal, Ian Martinez, who when not picking strings served as a staffer for the Obama campaign.
“He always said, ‘If Obama wins, we’re playing the inaugural!'” Dolan says.
And over the weekend, so they did: Dolan and his fellow part-time giggers made the leap from MacArthur Blvd. to a more presidential stage, as an expanded version of WMD played the People’s Inaugural Ball at the Carnegie Library.
“The place was packed and everybody was nice and seemed to enjoy us,” he says. “The stage had two levels, and we had a brass section and some guys standing behind us and above us, so I felt like I was on ‘Shindig.‘ I’m thinking the whole time, ‘I’m playing an inauguration!‘ What a thrill!”