Country Joe McDonald Net Worth: $2 Million


Country Joe McDonald

Category: Richest Celebrities › Singers
Net Worth: $2 Million
Date of Birth: Jan 1, 1942 (81 years old)
Place of Birth: Washington, D.C.
Gender: Male
Profession: Singer, Musician
Nationality: United States of America

What is the net worth of Country Joe McDonald?

Nation The musician Joe McDonald is an American who is worth $2 million. The primary vocalist of the 1960s rock group Country Joe and the Fish, Country Joe McDonald is most remembered for this role. Along with Barry Melton, he co-founded Country Joe and the Fish in 1965. The band gained notoriety for their performances at the original Woodstock Festival and the reunion event in 1979. The song “The “Fish” Cheer/I-Feel-Like-I’m-Fixin’-to-Die Rag” from 1965 is their most well-known release. Beginning with their debut album “Electric Music for the Mind and Body” in 1967, the band put out six studio albums. In addition, McDonald has a number of solo studio albums out. He has made appearances in a few TV shows and movies. The song “Janis” was inspired by Country Joe’s brief relationship with Janis Joplin.

Early Life

Country Joe McDonald

McDonald was given the name Joseph Allen McDonald at birth and was born in Washington, D.C. on January 1, 1942. Worden McDonald and Florence Plotnick are his parents. His mother was the daughter of Russian Jewish immigrants and was a longtime member of the Berkeley City Council. His father was from Oklahoma and worked for a telephone business. In their teens, both of his parents belonged to the Communist party; they named their son after Joseph Stalin but later abandoned the cause.

McDonald led his school’s marching band as president and a student conductor during his high school years. He joined the U.S. Navy at the age of 17, serving three years, and was eventually stationed in Japan. He spent a year at Los Angeles City College following his enlistment. He started busking on Telegraph Avenue in Berkeley, California in the early 1960s in an attempt to further his musical career.


Along with Barry Melton, he co-founded the band Country Joe & the Fish in 1965. The group rose to prominence in psychedelic rock. Originally released in 1965, “The Fish Cheer/I Feel Like I’m Fixin’ to Die Rag” is their most well-known song. It is also one of their early releases. This novelty song about the Vietnam War is a black comedy. McDonald wrote the song for a show opposing the Vietnam War in around twenty minutes. The song “Fish Cheer” has a call and response between the band and the crowd. It used to be that the band would spell out the word “fish” a few times before starting the song. Later on, though, it was changed to spell “fuck.” It gained popularity as a chant among the Woodstock generation and the 1960s and 1970s Vietnam veterans.

Notable appearances at the Avalon Ballroom, the 1967 Monterey Pop Festival, and the 1969 and 1979 Woodstock Festivals helped the band gain recognition. Following several prosperous years as a member of Country Joe & the Fish, McDonald started a solo career. His 1973 solo album “Paris Sessions” was well-received by critics. Throughout the following decades, he kept putting out solo albums, among of which were “Country Joe,” “Love is a Fire,” “Goodbye Blues,” “Leisure Suite,” “On My Own,” “Child’s Play,” “Superstitious Blues,” and “Time Flies By.”

Country Joe McDonald

McDonald faced a copyright infringement lawsuit in 2003 about “The Fish Cheer.” The lawsuit specifically claimed that Kid Ory’s co-written jazz class tune “Muskrat Ramble” from 1926 was the source of the song’s chorus. Since she was the copyright holder at the time, Ory’s daughter filed the lawsuit. The daughter filed the lawsuit based on a new recording of the song that McDonald made in 1999, even though it had been decades since the song was written by him in 1965. Observing that Ory and his daughter had known about the song’s original version for about three decades without filing a lawsuit, the court rejected the claim. Ory had to sell her copyrights in order to pay McDonald $395,000 in 2006, which she was compelled to pay for legal fees.

Three of the original members of Country Joe & the Fish reunited with McDonald in 2004. As the Country Joe Band, the ensemble performed live across the United States and the United Kingdom. McDonald started The Electric Music Band in 2015 with the goal of playing Country Joe & the Fish’s early, hallucinogenic songs. The entire album “Electric Music For the Mind and Body” has been performed by the band. Derek See, Matt Piucci, and Alec Palao make up the band.

McDonald was supposed to perform at the 2019 Woodstock 50th Anniversary event, but the event was canceled due to unsatisfactory discussions between the festival’s partners.

Personal Life and Death

McDonald wed Kathe Werum in 1963 and divorced her in 1966. Robin Menken was his wife of one year following his divorce from Werum. Their first child, Seven Anne McDonald, was born in San Francisco in 1968. In the late 1970s and early 1980s, Seven pursued a career as a child actress before going on to manage bands like Smashing Pumpkins. Menken later got married to Janice Taylor after McDonald and he parted ways. Together, they gave birth to Devin in 1976 and Tara in 1980. Following their divorce, he wed Kathy Wright. With Wright, he went on to have two more children: Emily in 1988 and Ryan in 1991. California’s Berkeley is home to McDonald.

Quick Summary

Country Joe McDonald, the American musician known for leading the 1960s rock group Country Joe and the Fish, has a net worth of $2 million. Born in 1942, he co-founded the band in 1965 and gained fame for their Woodstock performance. McDonald, also a solo artist, faced a copyright lawsuit in 2003 but prevailed. His personal life includes multiple marriages and children. Active in music, McDonald continues performing with bands like the Country Joe Band and The Electric Music Band.

Check Also

James Iha

James Iha Net Worth $20 Million

  Category: Richest Celebrities › Rock Stars Net Worth: $20 Million Date of Birth: Mar …