D.C. Superior Court Judge Russell Canan '76 is a guitar player in Deaf Dog and the Indictments, a group composed almost entirely of D.C. Superior Court judges.
Deaf Dog was formed in 2005 for a talent show at a DC Superior Court retreat at Rocky Gap State Park near Cumberland, Maryland. The band’s name is a reference to Canan’s late German shepherd, Chapin. During a rehearsal at Canan’s home, the judge’s wife and sons left the room; only the dog stayed. Canan’s bandmates quipped that "at least the dog likes us.” That’s when Canan broke the news that Chapin was deaf.
Since then, the group has developed a following of friends, family, and colleagues. It has mostly played at charity events, including for Children’s National Medical Center and Saint Elizabeths Hospital, and for legal organizations, such as the National Juvenile Defender Association.