CMU Approved

Approved: Dot Wiggin Band

By | Published on Thursday 7 November 2013

Dot Wiggin Band

Back in 1968, Austin Wiggin realised that his daughters were going to become the biggest pop group in America, thanks to a prediction made by his palmreading mother. His daughters hadn’t ever heard much music, due to his own strict upbringing of them, but realising you can’t fight fate, he took them out of school and bought them all instruments.

Calling them The Shaggs, Wiggin oversaw the development of his daughters’ performing and songwriting style, before in 1969 taking them into the studio to record their debut album, ‘Philosophy Of The World’.

Having little desire to be musicians, or frame of reference for what pop music should sound like, The Shaggs did not become the most famous group in the US. However, in the intervening years the album did find a cult following, thanks to the strange and innocent tones of songs like ‘Who Are Parents?’ and ‘My Pal Foot Foot’.

If you’re new to The Shaggs (or even if you’re not), this 2011 Radio 4 documentary by Jon Ronson, in which he catches up with the Wiggin sisters, is well worth a listen.

Anyway, the reason for this long introduction is that The Shaggs’ lead singer, Dot Wiggin, is back with her debut solo album – just 44 years after the release of ‘Philosophy Of The World’. Why? I’m not sure. Let’s not ask questions now. The album is a mix of previously unrecorded Shaggs songs and new material, and while more polished than the original band (the members of the Dot Wiggin Band being actual musicians), the charm of Dot’s very distinct style still shines through.

The album, ‘Ready! Get! Go!’ came out this week on Alternative Tentacles. Have a listen to opening track ‘Banana Bike’ here: