New Supergroup The Winery Dogs Debut “Elevate” Video

New Supergroup The Winery Dogs Debut “Elevate” Video

April 23, 2013

The Winery Dogs are a new supergroup featuring one-time Poison member Richie Kotzen on vocals and guitar, Mr. Big bassist Billy Sheehan and former Dream Theater drummer Mike Portnoy. The band are slated to release their self-titled debut album on May 15th in Japan, with release dates for other areas forthcoming, and are promoting the CD with a video for the first single “Elevate”. The trio have also launched their official Facebook page at

The Winery Dogs evolved from a project between forme Whitesnake guitarist John Sykes and Mike Portnoy. Although Portnoy and Sykes demoed a dozen or so songs at a Los Angeles studio last year, their vastly different work ethics and conflicting schedules were solely to blame for the dissolution of their collaboration.

During an interview that aired on Eddie Trunk’s “Friday Night Rocks” radio show in 2012, Portnoy said, “I love John personally, and we get along great — he’s a sweetheart of a guy — but I need to keep moving. I can’t sit still and kind of wait to make an album over the next three years, I need to put things on the calendar and move forward and get them done, and John’s kind of just a ‘wait, wait, wait’ guy. Sadly, it kind of just stopped in its tracks, and Billy and I said, ‘Look, let’s do something.’ And you (Eddie) were the one, actually, that suggested Richie Kotzen and I thought it was a brilliant suggestion, because he’s an unbelievably underrated talent, not only (as) a guitar player but a phemonal singer, and just an amazing songwriter and artist. I think people just kind of lump him, or write him off as the guy that was with Poison and Mr. Big. I think they have no idea what he’s really capable of.”

When asked to describe the musical direction of the project, Portnoy said, “It’s a classic-rock kind of power-trio sound. If you picture the classic-rock bands of… the classic ones — Led Zeppelin, Cream, Jimi Hendrix, Grand Funk Railroad — if you take that classic-rock power-trio sound of the early ’70s, and then you sprinkle it on top with some of the modern kind of sounds of Soundgarden and Alice In Chains or Black Crowes or Lenny Kravitz… It’s in that vein; it’s kind of a (mixture) of all of those bands. But on top of it all you’ve got the phenomenal playing that Richie and Billy do, and I could play a couple of things on the drums as well (chuckles), so… And all three of us are singing — Richie is the lead vocalist, obviously, but me and Billy are also singing.”

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