Poi Dog Pondering

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Poi Dog Pondering
Poi Dog Pondering 2009 ACL by Ron Baker.jpg
Poi Dog Pondering performing at the 2009
Austin City Limits Music Festival
Background information
Origin Hawaii
Austin, Texas
Chicago, Illinois
Genres Alternative rock
Occupations Musicians
Years active 1985–present
Labels Texas Hotel Records/Columbia Premonition
Associated acts Susan Voelz
Abra Moore
Website Official site

Poi Dog Pondering is an American musical group, noted for its cross-pollination of diverse musical genres, including various forms of acoustic folk music, and electronic music. Founded in Hawaii in 1985, the band moved to Austin, Texas in 1987, where they recorded their first three albums. In 1992, the band relocated once again, this time to Chicago, Illinois, and began to incorporate elements of house music into their style.

Austin years; members[edit]

During the Austin years (1987–1992), the band had the following lineup:

Additionally, the records featured literally dozens of musicians credited as "Satellite Poi Members". Most prominent amongst these satellite members were vocalist Abra Moore, drummer Sean Coffey and (on their third album) turntable operator Andre "DJ Cassanova" Irons.

Beginning with that third album, 1992's Volo Volo, the band began to experiment with new musical styles, including fully incorporating DJ Cassanova into the line-up. Orrall's emerging interest in dance and house music led the band to relocate to Chicago in 1992, where it developed a loyal local following and was named best band by Chicago magazine in 1997.

Chicago years; members[edit]

For the 1995 Pomegranate album, the band had the following lineup:

  • Frank Orrall - guitar, vocals
  • Dag Juhlin - guitar
  • Brigid Murphy - Alto Saxophone
  • Brent Olds - bass
  • Steve Goulding - drums
  • Leddie Garcia - Percussion
  • Dave Max Crawford - keyboards, clavinet
  • Jason More - Berimbau
  • Lloyd Brodnax King - Alto Flute
  • Katherine Pisaro - Oboe
  • Paul Mertens - sax, clarinet, flute
  • Susan Voelz - violin
  • Arlene Newson - backing vocals
  • Kornell Hargrove - backing vocals
  • Robert Cornelius - backing vocals

The Poi Dog line-up fluctuates frequently, and Orrall, Voelz, Dave Max Crawford and Nelson are the only members of the band left from the Austin era. With the release of 'In Seed Comes Fruit' in 2003, Poi Dog Pondering consisted of:

  • Frank Orrall - vocals, guitar, piano, synth. vibes, drums, samples, sequencing
  • Susan Voelz - violin, vocals
  • Paul Mertens - flute, sax, clarinet
  • Leddie Garcia - congas, bongos, ganzas, bells, shakers, various percussion
  • Kornell Hargrove - vocals
  • Ron Hall - bass
  • Rick Gehrenbeck - rhodes electric piano, clavinet, organ, synthesizers
  • Charlette Wortham - vocals
  • Alison Chesley - cello
  • Carla Prather - vocals
  • Tim Gant - piano, synthesizers
  • John "El John" Nelson - drums
  • Earl A. Talbot - Current Drummer


Studio albums[edit]

  • Poi Dog Pondering (1988)
  • Wishing Like a Mountain and Thinking Like the Sea (1990)
  • Volo Volo (1992)
  • Pomegranate (1995)
  • Natural Thing (1999)
  • In Seed Comes Fruit (2003)
  • 7 (2008)
  • Audio Love Letter (2011)

Other Releases[edit]

  • Fruitless (EP) (1990)
  • Palm Fabric Orchestra (1994)
  • Electrique Plummagram (Re-Mix Album) (1996)
  • That's the Way Love Is (Re-Mix EP) (1999)

Live albums[edit]

  • Liquid White Light (1997)
  • Soul Sonic Orchestra (2000)
  • Live at Metro Chicago (4 CD set, paired with DVD release, 12-21-2012[2])


  • Sweeping Up the Cutting Room Floor (2001)
  • The Best of Poi Dog Pondering (The Austin Years) (2005)

DVD Releases[edit]

  • Audio Visivo (2004)
  • Live at Metro Chicago (2 DVD set, paired with CD release, 12-21-2012[3])


External links[edit]