The Gothees

The Gothees


An eclectic mix of performers who perversely slant the dominant paradigm of rock/pop music or something. An unsettling mixture of '60s pop distilled with a hint of '80s influences and a pinch of the punk aesthetic. The bubblegum pop tunes of The Archies interpreted by The Velvet Underground.


We've decided to let the public describe us instead. Here's some reviews of our initial release...

The Gothees: Meet The Gothees (Starfish Records)

"Bubblegoth" is how The Gothees describe their music -- though it's almost more of a musicological experiment disguised as a band: Where does '60s and '70s bubblegum meet goth? The answer, as proposed by the local group's debut full-length Meet The Gothees, seems to lie somewhere between new wave and surf rock.

Meet the Gothees is half originals, half re-imagined chestnuts from the two genres, including songs by The Monkees, The Archies, Psychedelic Furs and Joy Division. This is "Sugar Sugar" as David Lynch would like it; "Pretty in Pink" with more of a "Crimson and Clover" feel. Other points of reference include They Might Be Giants and, revealingly, Falco.

Waldo P. Emerson Jones III (The Gothees all have stage names) interprets these tunes in a deadpan Ian Curtis-meets-Peter Murphy warble as the band lays down washed-out jangly guitars, chilly bass lines and drums, and the occasional synth or theremin. The Gothees' own songs range from pleasant and straightforward ("Another Starless Night") to Dr. Demento fare ("Pop County Song").

Meet the Gothees will be an unpleasant pill to swallow for those who take either goth or bubblegum too seriously; for anyone else, it's a playful and novel romp across time and genre. As the disc's first song advises, "Some Irony Required."

Concert Preview: The Gothees are the cartoon band for bubblegoth

Thursday, December 07, 2006
By Scott Mervis, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

"What if the Velvet Underground covered 'Sugar Sugar' "?

With that one-liner, Waldo P. Emerson Jones III had the concept for a rock 'n' roll band. Of course, it was supposed to be a band that would only last for one gig -- in December of 2002.

Four years later, The Gothees are looking less like a joke and more like a real entity. They've emerged from two years of hard knocks in the studios with a debut CD to be released on Starfish, a small label out of Cincinnati. It comes out in February, but will be previewed Saturday at the Brillobox with a CD release party featuring special edition packaging.

The Gothees could very well be the founders and keepers of the musical genre known as "bubblegoth." If you google the term, you get Bubblegoth Barbie, the page of some illustrator and then the Pittsburgh band.

Jones, a local artist, came up with the idea in the fall of 2002. "Growing up I was a big fan of television bands like the Monkees and the Archies and all the Hanna Barbera cartoons that had cartoon bands, like 'Scooby Doo' and 'Josie and the Pussycats.' That was my exposure to pop music. I thought, how cool would it be to put together a band for a one-off show and cover some of these '60s pop songs, and do it in a way that had a gothic twinge?"

Jones certainly had the voice for it, sounding like a cross between Ian Curtis of Joy Division and Peter Murphy of Bauhaus. And, he had a theremin, the essential instrument of camp horror.

He passed around some fliers indicating the formation of this bubblegoth band, and starting to pique some interest. When people called to inquire who was in his band, he told them the truth: "No one."

"A friend of mine said, 'You're starting a band, do you need a guitar player?' I said, 'Yeah, do you play guitar?' And he said, 'No, but I'm buying one' and I said 'OK, you're the guitar player.' That was the first recruit: Sir Lee Gothee."

With the addition of Crimson Bobbee Gothee, Toothless Rufus Gothee, Dan Fogel Gothee, H.P. Gothee and Mickee Gothee (who played clarinet and xylophone), they ventured into the Warsaw in Polish Hill.

"We went in thinking it's going to be our one-off show, and we'd all have a good laugh, but the audience really enjoyed it to the point where when we came off the stage, people were saying, 'When are you playing again?' and other people said, 'Do you want to play with us?' -- and we haven't stopped."

The Gothees have been darkening nightclubs, parties and horror conventions ever since, and have released two live CDs from radio sessions at WRCT. By Jones' count, there have been nine different incarnations of the Gothees in four years. One member, (Toothless) Rufus Gothee, quit when the band started to introduce original songs, because, says Jones, "He just felt like that wasn't what the Gothees were about."

Two years ago, the Gothees decided it was time for a proper studio release, never imagining it could possibly take two years. The odyssey began with a home-studio attempt that was aborted. Then they booked a friend's studio for an eight-hour session which went exceptionally well until the bass player tripped over a cord and erased the entire thing.

After another session, they came out with a master disc that ended up being corrupt. Throw in band members coming and going, hard-to-reach producers, full-time jobs and a stolen car, and Jones was convi


The Gothees - Meet The Gothees (Starfish Records) 2007 full-length debut release. 13 tracks. Available at CD Baby and iTunes.

But Is It Art?....The Gothees LIVE CD (2003) - Limited to 100 CDs attached to cereal boxes. Available briefly at 2 live shows.

The Gothees - Get Down at the Uptown (2005 Live) - limited CD for fans and radio only.

Set List

Set list is typically 15 to 25 songs and runs between 30 and 60 mins depending on event/venue. Currently the short sets are all original with perhaps 1 or 2 covers mixed in during encores. Longer sets will introduce a few additional obscure covers. The Meet The Gothees CD is a good representation of one of our shorter sets.