Merge mining Litecoin and Dogecoin on p2pool--Why am I getting "Error while checking Bitcoin connection:" message?

Beginner here, please help…

Error while checking Bitcoin connection:
Traceback (most recent call last):
Failure: twisted.internet.error.ConnectionRefusedError: Connection was refused by other side: 111: Connection refused.
Can anyone help me understand and get past this? Many thanks!!