Mongrel Dogs bring set of originals to Parkfest

Monday, July 11, 2011
Ron Dye and Istvan Csicsery-Ronay, the Mongrel Dogs, will bring their mix of musical influences to Parkfest Tuesday night with a set of original songs from 6:30-8 p.m.

The Mongrel Dogs, a Parkfest staple for several years, will bring a new repertoire to the Robe-Ann Park Bandshell from 6:30-8 p.m. Tuesday night.

Istvan Csiscery-Ronay and Ron Dye have been playing music as a duo since 2007. Over most of that time, it's been mostly cover songs, but they've changed direction in the last year.

"While in the past we collected a large repertoire of songs to cover, ranging from obscure folk blues, country and soul music that we retrofitted to our front-porch aesthetic, for the past year we have concentrated on writing and performing our own original music," Csiscery-Ronay said.

They fondly describe their music as "mongrel" music because they enjoy blending stylistic elements from different kinds of music and make no attempts to present traditionally derived music in an "authentic" way.

Both Dye and Csicsery-Ronay maintain that whatever style they have as a duo is determined by what they are unable to play.

"We try all kinds of things, but no matter what the material was originally supposed to sound like, it all ends up sounding like us, but we're OK with that," Dye said.

Csicsery-Ronay and Dye are professors at DePauw; both teach in the English Department, and Dye also teaches in communication and theater, as well as coordinating DePauw's Performing Arts Series.

Steve Michael will be their guest singer-guitarist on some tunes on Tuesday.

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