Pavlov's Dog (band)

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Pavlov's Dog
Origin St. Louis, Missouri
Genres Progressive rock, AOR
Years active 1972–1977, 1990–present
Labels ABC, Columbia, Telectro
Members David Surkamp
Manfred Plotz
Abbie (Hainz) Steiling
Amanda McCoy
Nathan Jatcko
Rick Steiling
Sara Surkamp
Past members Mike Safron
Doug Rayburn
Rick Stockton
David Hamilton
Siegfried Carver
Steve Levin
Steve Scorfina
Tom Nickeson
Kirk Sarkisian
Nick Schleuter
Bill Franco
Randy Hetlage

Pavlov's Dog is a 1970s progressive rock/AOR band formed in St. Louis, Missouri in 1972.


Early years and split

Pavlov's Dog originally was composed of vocalist David Surkamp, guitarist Steve Levin, keyboardists David Hamilton and Doug Rayburn, bassist Rick Stockton, drummer Mike Safron, and violinist Siegfried Carver (born Richard Nadler). Levin left the band during their inaugural year and was replaced by Steve Scorfina (formerly of REO Speedwagon). Carver departed the band following the release of the band's debut album Pampered Menial. For their second album At the Sound of the Bell (1976), Tom Nickeson was added to the line-up on guitar; switching to keyboards not long thereafter following the departure of Hamilton. Former Yes and King Crimson drummer Bill Bruford performed the drums on this album due to the absence of Safron; and when Safron did not receive a promised credit on the album sleeve he departed the band permanently and was replaced by Kirk Sarkisian. This line-up of the band remained until their dissolution in 1977.

Pampered Menial was briefly released in 1975 on ABC Records but then quickly re-issued by Columbia Records. The result was that both versions appeared in stores at nearly the same time. The album was produced by Sandy Pearlman and Murray Krugman, who had found success earlier in the decade producing Blue Öyster Cult. Carver left the band after the release of Pampered Menial. Their second album At the Sound of the Bell followed on Columbia in 1976. A raft of guest artists contributed to the album, including jazz saxophonist Michael Brecker and Roxy Music's Andy MacKay.

The band recorded a third album in 1977, but due to poor sales of the first two albums, Columbia refused to release it, hastening the band's split. The third album finally appeared as a bootleg in the 1980s, a limited edition pressed from stolen master tapes. It was released under the name The St. Louis Hounds, without Pavlov's Dog's name on the sleeve. The third album finally was released legally in 2007 by German label Rockville Music, titled Has Anyone Here Seen Siegfried?, remastered and including additional 10 bonus tracks of unreleased material from the 1970s. The German label TRC bootlegged the album, under the title Third, but this version does not include the bonus tracks.

When the band split up in the late 1970s, Surkamp was rumored to be dead,[1] although in fact he was working with former Fairport Convention member Ian Matthews on a band named Hi-Fi. While living in Seattle, this group was successful on the club scene and recorded a 5-track live 12" EP in 1981 entitled Hi-Fi Demonstration Record and a studio album in 1983 entitled Moods for Mallards, and a Christmas single "It's Almost Christmas". These records were released on First American Records and distribution was mostly limited to the Pacific Northwest region.[2]

Reformation and return to music

In 1990, Surkamp and Rayburn reformed the band and recorded Lost in America for US label Telectro Records, which was re-released worldwide by Rockville Music in 2007, after TRC had also bootlegged it in the late 1990s. Scorfina performed on some of the sessions for this album.

On June 26, 2004, a reunion concert featuring the classic line-up (without Carver), took place in St. Louis, and in 2005 Surkamp, Safron, reformed the band with Surkamp's wife, Sara on vocals and guitar, lead guitarist Ray Schulte, keyboardist Royal Robbins, bassist Tim Duggen, and violinist Andrea Young. This line-up toured Europe annually in 2005 and 2006, playing the Arrow Rock Festival in the Netherlands 2006 in front of 54,000 people.

After the 2006 tour, Schulte, Robbins and Duggen were replaced, and the new line-up was then: David Surkamp (vocals and guitar), Mike Safron (drums), Sara Surkamp (vocals and guitar), "Bongo" Bill Costello (mellotron), Bill Franco (lead guitar), David Karns (bass), Michael McElvain (keyboards) and Andrea Young (violin). This line-up played two tours in 2007, including the first tours in Greece and Crete in March 2007, and then touring Europe in the summer of 2007 playing venues such as Spirit of 66 in Verviers, BE as well as headlining both the Burg Herzberg Festival in 2007 (25,000 people). This coincided with the 2007 release of a solo album by Surkamp, Dancing on the Edge of a Teacup, by Rockville Music. The Burg Herzberg performance had also been filmed and recorded, but has not been released in any but bootlegged formats.

In 2008, David Karns, Bill Franco, Michael McElvain and Andrea Young were unable to return due to previous commitments (Karns and Franco playing with Anthony Gomes, Young playing with the Reverse Cowgirls and McElvain finishing his graduate music studies).To fill the spots, the Surkamps hired Phil Gomez (keyboards), Randy Hetlage (lead guitar), Abbie Hainz Steiling (violin), and saw the return of original Pavlov's Dog member, Doug Rayburn, playing bass. This lineup again toured throughout Europe in 2008 playing many venues as well as the Woodstock Festival in 2008 (5,000 people).[citation needed]

In 2009 Doug Rayburn was unable to return, and Rick Steiling was brought in on bass. Also not returning were Phil Gomez and Randy Hetlage. Bill Franco was asked back on lead guitar and Nick Schlueter was brought in to handle keyboards and mellotron parts, reducing the lineup to seven members from the classic eight. This lineup toured Europe from 2009 through 2012, playing its most extensive tours to date including the band's first dates in the U.K. and the Fiesta City Festival in Verviers, BE in 2012, sharing the stage with the legendary Blues Brothers Band (Steve Cropper, "Blue" Lou Marini, Donald "Duck" Dunn, et al). During this time, Pavlov's Dog recorded two shows in 2009 (Augsberg and Karlsruhe, the latter filmed), with the Augsberg show being released for the album Live and Unleashed. Also released was the studio album Echo and Boo in 2010.

Bill Franco exited the band in May 2013, and after auditions, Amanda McCoy was brought in on lead guitar. Pavlov's Dog then again toured Europe in 2013, backing the first official release of the third Pavlov's Dog studio album that had originally been recorded in 1976, Has Anyone Here Seen Siegfried? with the addition of live bonus tracks of the band with the lineups from 2007, 2011 and 2012. There was no Pavlov's Dog tour in 2014, though David and Sara Surkamp went on a brief solo acoustic tour in the U.K. and Germany. During this time, Nick Schlueter exited the band, and after auditions, Nathan Jatcko was brought in on keyboards for the 2015 tour through Europe.

In the meantime, The Pekin Tapes, a collection of demos recorded in Pekin, Illinois in 1973, was assembled from master tapes and released in 2014, also by Rockville Records. It was intended to be the band's official debut album until ABC made them record Pampered Menial, of which some of those demos were re-recorded for that album. The tapes were lost when the studio burned down, thus a proper album was never released, until surviving copies were discovered in a private inheritance.[3]

Siegfried Carver died on May 30, 2009; he was 60 years old.[4] Doug Rayburn died on September 21, 2012.[5] Stockton died on February 17, 2015.[6] Nathan Jatcko, the latter day keyboardist with the band, committed suicide on January 17, 2018.[7]

Band members[edit]


Studio albums[edit]

  • Pampered Menial (1975)
  • At the Sound of the Bell (1976)
  • Third (1977)
  • Has Anyone Here Seen Siegfried? (Bootlegged in 1980, Officially released in 2007)
  • Lost in America (1990)
  • Echo & Boo (2010)
  • The Pekin Tapes (2014)

Live albums[edit]

  • Live and Unleashed (2010, CD)
  • House Broken (2016, DVD/CD)


Year Single Chart Positions
1975 "Julia" - 79


  1. ^ "PAVLOV`S DOG (founded in 1973)". Retrieved 20 January 2018. 
  2. ^ "Get Ready to ROCK! Review of CD album by Hi-Fi called The Complete Collection featuring Ian Matthews and David Surkamp". Retrieved 20 January 2018. 
  3. ^ "Pavlov's Dog - The Pekin Tapes (recorded 1973)". Rockville Music. Retrieved 27 May 2018. 
  4. ^ MICHAEL D. SORKIN. "Richard Nadler Was Pavlov's dog violinist, became conservative activist". Retrieved 20 January 2018. 
  5. ^ "Post from Pavlov's Dog on Douglas Rayburn's passing". Facebook. 
  6. ^ "Richard B. (Rick) Stockton's Obituary on St. Louis Post-Dispatch". St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Retrieved 17 March 2017. 
  7. ^ Hill, Daniel. "Nathan Jatcko Mourned by Friends and Fellow St. Louis Musicians". Retrieved 20 January 2018. 

External links[edit]