Dirty Power Finds Surprising Success

Excerpted from the magazine for Billboard.com.

Patrick Goodwin still smiles with equal parts shy surprise and minor disbelief every time he meets a fan of his band, Dirty Power. "I honestly thought that people would find us to be completely uncool," he says. "There's nothing about this band that's hip or trendy or similar to anything out there right now."

Apparently, that is precisely what is attracting a fast-growing cadre of disciples to the San Francisco-based hard-rock quartet. In a field of sound-alikes vying for attention with a bottomless bag of gimmicks, Dirty Power delivers a brand of no-frills music that relies exclusively on sharp musicianship and well-drawn songs.

Dirty Power also provides something that few young bands do-historical reverence. The band's eponymous disc, due March 18 on the independent Dead Teenager Records, is rich with loving references to such legendary hard-rockers as Judas Priest and AC/DC.

It is a creative move that could easily register as quaint or creakily retro in the wrong hands. But as processed through singer/guitarist Goodwin and cohorts Jeff Potts (drums), Steve Perrone (guitar), and Nick Ulman (bass), it resonates as a radical and fresh new sound. "This band is born out of a love of old-fashioned hard rock," Goodwin says. "We didn't set out to sound like anything specific. We just wanted to make music that was fun and hard-edged."

Goodwin formed Dirty Power during a hiatus from Pansy Division, for which he has served as a guitarist. It quickly went from being a "fun side project" to a full-fledged group that is now an underground club favorite on the verge of a mainstream breakthrough.

"Now, people are telling us that we're refreshing and cool," Goodwin says. "It's wild, man. It proves that anything is possible when you do what you love."

The group recently won the Southwest edition of the Independent Music World Series (IMWS). A national unsigned artist competition, the IMWS is presented by CD manufacturer Disc Makers in association with Billboard's Musician's Guide to Touring & Promotion and other sponsors.

Dirty Power was among six finalists chosen by a Billboard judging panel to take part in a live showcase and competition Jan. 16 at the Knitting Factory in Los Angeles. The band was voted best out of the six at the competition by a second panel of judges comprised of music business and media professionals, including two Billboard judges. (For information on the IMWS, call 888-800-5796 or visit discmakers.com/music/imws.)

Excerpted from the Feb. 8, 2003, issue of Billboard. The full original text of the article is available in the Billboard.com members section.

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