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Published: Friday, 11/7/2003

Musician building a solo career

Mike Doughty founded the quirky, innovative band Soul Coughing. Mike Doughty founded the quirky, innovative band Soul Coughing.

Indie rock and hip-hop favorite Soul Coughing may have breathed its last breath, but the spirit of the band lives on with Mike Doughty, its founder who now tours as a solo artist.

Doughty, who will be in concert Tuesday at Howard s Club H in Bowling Green, recently released a six-song disc called “Rockity Roll” on his own while he continues to negotiate with record labels.

“I recorded a full-length record over the summer but I m still looking for a label,” Doughty said in an interview this week from New York City, “so I just did the EP as a little stop gap.”

He said he plays a couple of Soul Coughing songs in concert each night, but is certainly not dwelling on the demise of the quirky, innovative group that enjoyed critical acclaim from its founding in 1994 until it disbanded in 2000.

“I left because I wanted to do what I m doing now,” he said, referring to his solo shows.

Soul Coughing s bohemian mix of hip-hop beats, rock and roll, and funky jazz was captured on three releases on Warner Bros. Slash label, “Ruby Vroom” in 1994, “Irresistible Bliss” in 1996 (which yielded the perennial favorite “Super Bon Bon”), and “El Oso” in 1998.

Doughty s first solo disc, “Skittish,” was released shortly after the demise of Soul Coughing but was actually recorded as a side project in 1996, when he was still in the group.

He released a limited-edition CD, “Smofe and Smang: Live in Minneapolis,” last year.

The new EP features the bare-bones setting of Doughty and a drum machine, while his unreleased disc, produced by Dan Wilson of Semisonic, was recorded with a full band.

Known for his thoughtful, introspective lyrics, Doughty has penned a book of poems, titled Slanky, published by Soft Skull Press, and was a guest artist on They Might Be Giants “Mink Car” and BT s “Never Gonna Come Back Down.”

Mike Doughty performs at 11 p.m. Tuesday at Howard s Club H, 210 North Main St., Bowling Green. Doors open at 9 p.m.; the show starts at 10. Tickets are $12. Information: 419-352-9951.

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