BMHOF Class of 1987
As Doctor Dirty, John Valby has been entertaining audiences up and down the East Coast for 40 years. His material stretches the limits of free speech and accepted good taste, satirizing current events and making lewd references to body parts and human functions. At his performances you find yourself laughing at songs with themes that would have earned you a mouthful of soap as a child or massive penance after confession.
Valby is a classically trained pianist who received his first piano lessons from Catholic nuns in his hometown of Rochester. In the late ‘60s he could be found playing keyboards at Western New York clubs like Gilligan’s with his band The Charles. After working with several other bands, in the early 70’s he started playing doing solo dates, performing ragtime tunes and pop standards. He was doing well but needed something to make his show stand out and be more memorable.
While at Middlebury College in Vermont during the mid 60’s, John often played piano to entertain his fraternity brothers. He created some R-rated compositions which exemplified the beer enhanced debauchery or the frat parties. “There once was a girl from…”
A decade later, when performing at the Showboat, a club in a boat anchored at the foot of Hertel Avenue in Buffalo, he started mixing in some of the “dirt” songs from his frat days. According to Valby, “I did three dirty songs one night and pretty soon the power of dirt pushed most everything else out. I became a mirror for the audience and the audience turned out to be 20 times dirtier than me.”
In 1975, Paul Lamanna experienced a John Valby performance at the Showboat. He gave him the moniker “Doctor Dirty” and 40 years later is still his manager. After honing a full night of dirt at area clubs like The Red Balloon, Merlin’s, After Dark, Gilligan’s, The Trivit House and Melanie’s, it was time to take the show on the road.
Attired in his trademark white tuxedo, derby and black bow tie, Valby played six weeks in Daytona, Fla., when the town was overflowing with partying, hormone-driven college students. The match was perfect. Lamanna booked Valby into the NEC college concert booking conference. His show was perfect for the college circuit. During the 1975-76 school year John performed at colleges from Vermont to Florida, establishing a touring area where he today continues to annually perform at clubs and special events.
When John is not playing or singing, he yells obscenities at the audience and the audience yells back. This helps establish a relationship with the audience. He smiles with them, laughs with them, making everyone laugh at themselves and have a good time. You could describe John Valby as a blend of Allen Sherman, Spike Jones, Lenny Bruce and Weird Al Yankovic, topped off with the dirt of Redd Foxx.
Valby has recorded over 30 CDs and LPs which bear titles such as: “Compact Dirt,”“Sit on a Happy Face,”“Give Me Dirt or Give Me Death,”“Operation F*** Iraq” and many more titles that cannot be printed on this site. He has also recorded non-dirt material, including a Christmas album, a clean blues LP, a rock album with the Krakup Quartet, new age music and a children’s album and he has produced recordings by other musicians. His R-rated albums have sold more copies than many national recording acts.
For the past 40 years John, his wife Anne and their six children have made suburban Buffalo their home. John was also an excellent ice hockey player, his rink contacts resulting in two album being recorded with Buffalo Sabres alumnus Jim Schoenfeld. When Valby is not on the road, you will find him out on the golf course.
In addition to performing and recording, Valby had a role as a piano player in a Tijuana brothel in the 1983 film “Losin It,” which featured an early performance by Tom Cruise. Rumor has it that there is a biographical movie in the works about John Valby’s musical exploits. More on that as it happens …
*MATURE CONTENT - The below websites and videos include adult content and are intended for mature audiences only.
John Valby’s official website is at www.johnvalby.com
Video (click the links below):
"Buffalo" by John Valby
John Valby - LeRoy/Yo-Ho
John Valby - "ObamaCare" - "In The Food"
(Revised by Rick Falkowski, November 2015)
Back - 1987