Canadian Doug Varty is a professional guitarist, pianist, harmonica player, singer and songwriter. When he was 17, he joined the Canadian rock band Seadog and toured North America, opening for supergroups Rush, BTO and Canned Heat. Later, he led the house band at the Old Chicago blues club in London, Ontario, backing stars like Paul James, Edgar Winter, John Lee Hooker and The Fabulous Thunderbirds. An avid R’n’B fan, his raspy voice has always displayed a remarkable similarity to Rod Stewart’s.

In 1998, Doug was approached by veteran Canadian blues singers Chris and Geoff Dahl, aka The Soul Brothers, who were looking for a “Rod Stewart” for a national “Soul Men” tour. The trio knew of each other’s work and it seemed like a natural fit. With his raspy voice and a spikey blonde wig, Doug became an important part of the team, helping to boost sales of their concert tickets from coast to coast.

The Soul Men tour was a real eye opener for Doug. It taught him that he didn’t need to drag tons of equipment around, or sweat over a guitar or keyboard, in order to entertain an audience. As Rod Stewart, people would begin to cheer as soon as he walked up to a microphone. When the tour ended, he began to get offers from all over the the country to book “Rod” by himself. This was an opportunity he just couldn’t pass up.

Since launching the Rod show, Doug has performed throughout Canada, the USA, Bermuda, Germany and The Cayman Islands, for mostly sellout audiences. Calling the venture a success is putting it mildly. On March 9th , Doug appears at Incanto, in Puerto Vallarta and on March 10 & 11, he returns for the third time to The Luna Lounge, in Bucerias. More information is available on the venue web sites and here in The Tribune.

Merv Buchanan on Email
Merv Buchanan
Merv Buchanan is a Calgary based entertainment contractor, record producer and music industry entrepreneur. He is the creator of MuchMusic's national Video Dance service and a former recording studio technology instructor at Fanshawe College, in London, Ontario.