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Mike Doughty Gets Relaxed, Joyful

Mike Doughty grew up an Army brat, bouncing from one base to another, until he settled in New York City as an adult. There, he studied poetry and worked as a doorman for the influential music club The Knitting Factory, where he met the other three people who would form the "deep slacker jazz" band Soul Coughing. In 1998, they reached the height of their success — and then promptly split up.

After Soul Coughing's dissolution, Doughty spent years on the road finding his voice with just a rental car, an acoustic guitar and a cult following.

With a new backing band in tow and a new CD called Golden Delicious, Doughty continues to refine the sound he's been honing on the road. Produced by former Semisonic frontman (and Dixie Chicks collaborator) Dan Wilson, the album sounds more relaxed and joyful than previous efforts.

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Andrea Seabrook covers Capitol Hill as NPR's Congressional Correspondent.