These docs rock – for a good cause
Posted on February 9, 2022 by Carol McPhail
Just call them the bad boys of internal medicine.
Officially, they are RL6, a rock band made up of three interns, one resident and two chief residents at the USA College of Medicine: Drs. Chance Dickson, Reid McClenny, John Anaya, Enrique Vazquez, Justin Ellerman and Gideon Dosunmu. Their rendition of the Chuck Berry hit “Johnny B. Goode” recently won them one of five spots in Doc Rock, an upcoming battle-of-the-bands fundraiser for USA Health.
“We formed this band in mid-December specifically to play at Doc Rock, and we hit the ground running,” said Anaya, who along with McClenny make up the guitar section.
Members of the band say they hope to attract other residents and Graduate Medical Education staff to attend Doc Rock on March 31 at the Soul Kitchen and vote for RL6 to win. Doc Rock raises funds for research and critical clinical needs at USA Health Children’s & Women’s Hospital, the Mitchell Cancer Institute and University Hospital.
McClenny, an internal medicine intern, proposed the idea of forming a band after a few of the guys had jammed informally at Ellerman’s house, said Farheen Surtie, M.D., band manager and a third chief resident for internal medicine. Soon they had recruited Dickson for lead vocals, Vazquez for bass, Ellerman for keyboard and Dosunmu for drums.
The name RL6 for the six-member band was borrowed from a line of software used by hospitals to report safety concerns or events. “We thought it would be a funny play on that name to call ourselves the ‘bad boys’ of internal medicine,” Anaya said.
Although 1950s rock-and-roll landed RL6 a spot in the competition, the band’s playlist offers a wide assortment of tunes. “Our music interests vary greatly from classics like Queen to more popular artists like John Mayer and The Killers to thrash and death metal,” Anaya said.
Surtie said the group plans to create T-shirts for their supporters to wear at Doc Rock. “All of us are excited that our group of internal medicine residents were accepted to play at a battle of the bands,” she said.
For now, RL6 is rehearsing two to three times a week depending on the busy schedules of the residents. “It has become an outlet – something to do and something to look forward to outside of the hospital,” Surtie said. “It’s one way to stand together and gives us all something to root for.”
To learn more about Doc Rock or to purchase tickets, visit the Doc Rock webpage.