Denny Doherty

Birth: November 29, 1940 as Dennis Gerrard Stephen Doherty in Halifax, Nova Scotia
Death: January 19, 2007 in Mississigua, Ontario

Linda Woodward (1971)
Jenette Doherty (-1998)

Jessica Woodward (w/Linda)

Principal site:

Pre-M&P Career—

Denny’s first serious vocal group was formed with others from his hometown of Halifax and known as The Colonials.  Upon moving to the US to pursue better chances at a career, their name was changed to The Halifax Three.  The group did not last very long, and, with its end, Denny moved on to join Cass Elliot, James Hendricks, and Zal Yanovsky to form Cass Elliot and the Big Three.  The soon-to-be addition of John Sebastian and drummer Art Stokes heralded the start of the group as The Mugwumps. The group would eventually disperse (with Sebastien and Yanovsky going on to form the group The Lovin’ Spoonful).  Denny would eventually get a call from John Phillips asking him to join with him and Michelle in establishing The New Journeymen.  The three would stay together, and, after deciding to change their sound and add Cass Elliot to the group, would eventually become The Mamas and the Papas.

Post-M&P Career—

Denny can be said to have had the most varied career after the break-up of the group since he became involved in major projects of music, film, stage, and television at various points.  He began with his continuation of singing with the release of several albums.  He would follow up his modest success here with a move into acting and television in his native Canada, including two prime time variety shows. Most of his time, however, would be spent on stage shows.  He would briefly return to singing in the early ’80s by joining with John Phillips in a renewed version of the Mamas and the Papas which toured singing the classic M&P songs.  Following this time would be a variety of television series and films.  One of his most longstanding roles was in the acclaimed PBS series “Theodore Tugboat”.   During the later years of his life, Denny combined his acting, singing, and writing to create a successful stage show based on the story of the Mamas and Papas which received many good reviews.  He passed away January 19, 2007 from complications following surgery.


Solo albums: 
Watcha Gonna Do? [1971] Tracks
Waiting for a Song [1974] Tracks
Dream a Little Dream (w/ The Dream Band)  [1997] Tracks

Non-album singles:
“My Song” [1973]
“To Caludia on Thursday” [1973]
“Indian Girl”/”Baby Catch the Moon” [1972]

Group albums:
In the early ’80s, Denny teamed up with John Phillips, Spanky McFarlane, and Mackenzie Phillips to recreate a version of the Mamas and Papas.  Denny would tour with the group (which had a constantly changing membership) for some time.  They release several concert albums including:
The Mamas and Papas Reunion Live [1987]
California Dreamin’: Live in Concert 

Other album credits:
Denny contributed to the vocals of the following artists’ albums:
    Bob Gibson on Bob Gibson [197?]
    Jimmie Haskel on Jimmie Haskel: California ’99 [1971]
    Joel Tobias on God is Watching America [1978]

Man on the Moon by John Phillips (5 performances on Broadway) [1969]
Needfire as John Michael [1998-2000]
Dream a Little Dream: The Nearly True Story of the Mamas and the Papas [1997-2001]
(performer and co-writer with Paul Ledoux)
North Mountain Breakdown
The Secret Garden
18 Wheels
The Art of War
Much Ado About Nothing
The Taming of the Shrew
The End of the Beginning
Brandy Dancers
Juno and the Paycock


Television (series regular):
Denny’s Show
 as host [1978]
Atlantic Summer as host [1978-1979]
Theadore Tugboat as the Harbour Master [1993-2000]
Pit Pony 
as Charley McGinnis [1999-2000]

Television (movies):
The Pit Pony as Charley [1997] (Gemini Award nominee)
Elvis Meets Nixon as Vernon [1997]
25 Years of Skinnamarink 
as Denny [2004]
Prince Charming
 as the Jeweller [2001]

Television (appearances):
Family of Friends
Canadian Express
The Job
Valse Triste 
Street Legal 
This is Wonderland 
Trailer Park Boys 

Oh What a Night 
as Harold [1992]
Hurt Penguins as Bilbo Roberts [1992]
The Real Howard Spitz (a.k.a. Writer’s Block) [1998]
Comfort Creek
The Labour of Love
Getting to Work