« Baltimore's top 50 bars: Joe Squared, Turp's, Grand Central among 50-41 | Main | Review: Amedeo's in Little Italy »

October 11, 2010

Dirty Marmaduke Flute Squad breaks up

Dirty Marmaduke Flute Squad has broken up after seven years, guitarist Nikc Miller tells Midnight Sun.

The Baltimore costume band just played Windup Space Friday for their most recent self-release, "Boneslinky," a show that was joined by another local wacko/hero, Septimius the Great.

Miller said the band hadn't generated enough commercial interest to justify keeping it alive, especially as band members go on to other ventures, like working at an alpaca farm ranch. 

"In the early days, we could play anywhere within a day's notice," he said. "But now it's gotten too elaborate to make it work. There's only so many freaks and weirdos in this town that like us, and it's not clear they'll come out every time."

Dirty Marmaduke started recording in 2003, and performed its first live show two years later at what is now the Hamilton Arts Collective.

The five band members dress up in ludicrous costumes and sing songs like "Don't Let Jesus Ruin your Day," and "I Like Fat Girls." Lewd? Sure, but the band was also living, costumed testament that there's room in the city for every weirdo fond of a dollar store unicorn costume.

Miller said the goal was never to make money, which allowed them to stick together for seven years while barely breaking even. But as band members dabbled in other projects and careers, it was difficult to keep a balance.

The band members collectively decided it was time to quit on Saturday, a day after their album's release party at Windup Space as part of Baltimore Beer Week. Miller said some 300 fans attended.

In between drinks at Racers Cafe and Hamilton Tavern, lead guitarist Ryan Graham suggested they weren't breaking through to crowds beyond their fans.To produce this latest album, they raised some $600 from a campaign.

"If you're around and around, people think if they've seen your show, there's just nothing new to find," Miller said. "It's such a small city, and there's just a ton of bands and not that many people."

But Miller also said that the band was competing with some of the members' other projects. Miller is working on his solo career, Graham is working on a book and vocalist Steve Thomas is working at an alpaca ranch. 

"It wasn't a meeting, it was just a conclusion we came to," Miller said. "We have all this other stuff we want to do," Miller said.

Barring some lucrative offer, Miller said the band won't perform again. The new album will still be sold at their website. 

 Photo: Dirty Marmaduke Flute Squad

Follow Midnight Sun on Facebook and Twitter @midnightsunblog
Posted by Erik Maza at 4:16 PM | | Comments (11)
Categories: Music News


O NO! Who will endorse The Raven now?

CRAP I JUST WROTE A REVIEW OF THE SHOW! at least I have some gems re: Septimius. Stay tuned!

Wild Bonerz will still be endorsing Raven, and will do a fine job of it as they proved at the CAmm Slamm last night.

Evan, please post your review anyway! Just because we're now on "indefinite hiatus" doesn't mean the show never happened. I personally think it was a great show, and there wasn't any way we were going to top that anytime soon.

The proper term is alpaca "ranch," not "farm". But I assume Nikc called it that because until I learned the proper term myself, I called it a farm when sharing the news with the band earlier this year.

P.S. The new album is also on iTunes. Please buy it so we don't get our legs broken by our "investors". They're none too happy about this whole breakup thing after just giving us a bunch of cash to produce the CD.

I don’t believe this for a second and will not allow this band to just walk off into the sunset so easy. After 13 years of performing all over the East Coast I’ve been able to walk away from hookers, trannies, a failed marriage, a child the courts has decided isn’t mine, numerous rehab centers and crack houses. But the one thing I haven’t been able to walk away from is the stage and sound of people cheering. No matter how big or small the club/crowd was it always called out for me and it will do the same for Dirty Marmaduke Flute Squad.

Bummer! That was an awesome show. Surely with the proper amount of coke we can lure these fine young lads back to the stage one day.

Easily the best / funniest part, aside from the DMFS set and Septimius shakin' his groove thing, was Dave, the bodyguard for Septimius. Essentially Dolph Lundgren with a Bluetooth headset, constantly following the First Black Roman Emperor around the entire time...

anyway, here's a rundown of some of the show, including a DMFS track and Septimius' smash hit "I Am Fashion." It was a good crowd and a super fun show, thanks guys

We we're more than happy to invite Septimius to play for our crowd. We are essentially passing our torch of absurdity onto him. He is a true professional and a super nice guy. I predict big things happening for Septimius the Great.

Thanks for making it out Evan. Love the review.

Thank you, Evan! Cool review.

Septimius WAS super nice, on time, and completely drama-free. And yes, his Dolph Lundgren bodyguard was awesome.

Sorry to see you guys go. From Team Septimius - It was truly a pleasure to work with DMFS. Looking forward to doing more local gigs as well. There's no place like home !!!!

Post a comment

All comments must be approved by the blog author. Please do not resubmit comments if they do not immediately appear. You are not required to use your full name when posting, but you should use a real e-mail address. Comments may be republished in print, but we will not publish your e-mail address. Our full Terms of Service are available here.

Please enter the letter "s" in the field below:
About Erik Maza
Erik Maza is a features reporter at the Baltimore Sun. He writes for several sections of the Sun paper and contributes weekly columns on music and nightlife. He also writes and edits the Midnight Sun blog. He often covers entertainment, business, and the business of entertainment. Occasionally, he writes about Four Loko, The Block, the liquor board, and those who practice "simulated sex with a potted palm tree." Before The Sun, he was a reporter at the Miami New Times. He's also written for Miami magazine, the Orlando Sentinel, the Sarasota Herald Tribune and the Gainesville Sun. Got tips? Gripes? Pitches? He's reachable at Click here to keep up with the dumb music he's listening to.

Midnight Sun covers Baltimore music, live entertainment, and nightlife news. On the blog, you'll find, among other things, concert announcements, breaking news, bars closings and openings, up-to-date coverage of crime in nightlife, new music, round-the-clock coverage of Virgin Mobile FreeFest, handy guides on bars staying open past 2 a.m. on New Year's Eve and those that carry Natty Boh on draft. Recurring features include seven-day nightlife guides, Concert News, guest reviews of bars and concerts, Wednesday Corkboard, and photo galleries, as well as reader-submitted photos. Thanks for reading.

Most Recent Comments
Recent tweets
Sign up for FREE nightlife alerts*
Get free Baltimore Sun mobile alerts
Sign up for nightlife text alerts

Returning user? Update preferences.
Sign up for more Sun text alerts
*Standard message and data rates apply. Click here for Frequently Asked Questions.
  • Weekend Watch newsletter
Plan your weekend with's best events, restaurant and movie reviews, TV picks and more delivered to you every Thursday for free.
See a sample | Sign up

Photo galleries
Stay connected