Dropkick Murphys thrive on disparate musical genre
The Dropkick Murphys already have established the viability of a weird, unlikely combination -- punk rock and Irish folk. Like the legendary Pogues before them -- and many lesser bands who came after -- they have found the largely invisible connections between these disparate musical genres, creatively fusing two unstable elements that seemed to have little in common.
Yet, the band seems to thrive on dichotomies. They're a favorite of the get-drunk-and-mosh meathead crowd, yet, they've got a pronounced affection for history and literature. In an even more unlikely combination, they're hardcore punk rockers who go nuts for (Boston) sports. Lately, they've had quite a bit to cheer about.
"We've always been a band that wore our sports allegiances on our sleeves," songwriter/vocalist/bassist Ken Casey says. "I was lucky enough to be in Vancouver for Game 7 (of the Stanley Cup Finals). I got to go up with the team, go on the ice, and hold the Cup. And the jersey that I actually wore on the ice that night, I've worn at every show we've played since. Whether it's 100 degrees out or not, you better believe I'll be wearing it.
"We actually had two nights of shows in Vancouver after that, and (I) did quite a bit of 'rubbing it in.' "
Although the Bruins typically are a distant fourth in Bostonians' affections (after the Red Sox, Patriots, Celtics), the Dropkick Murphys always have put them higher. They wrote "Time to Go," about the team in 2003, which has become an unofficial anthem for the Bruins -- as has their re-working of "Tessie," the old Red Sox song.
As it turns out, the band's penchant for boozy, shout-along choruses works as well in arenas as it does in dingy rock clubs.
The song "I'm Shipping Up to Boston," featured prominently in the Oscar-winning Martin Scorsese Boston crime drama "The Departed," took the band's profile to another level.
Their most recent album, "Going Out in Style," is their first in four years, and attempts something startlingly ambitious and unusual -- a concept album written with the writer Michael Patrick McDonald ("All Souls," "Easter Rising").
"We were halfway through writing a record, and decided to focus it on a character, even though the stories were based on different people's experiences and lives. In the old days, literature influenced music, and music influenced literature, particularly in Ireland. Books like 'Finnegan's Wake,' and Brendan Behan's plays influenced his brother to write the song 'The Auld Triangle,' for just a couple of examples. So, we went to a friend of ours from Boston, Michael McDonald, and told him, 'This is what it's about. We want you to bring a character to life, based on these songs.' He's just about finished with the short story, about 30 to 40 pages."
The story might be released online. They're also considering doing a repackaging of the album with an audio version of the story, and, perhaps, a collector's edition with a physical book. The plan is to have it done by the holidays. If not, St. Patrick's Day is the next logical target.
"It gives a little more depth and weight to the album, I think. Especially in this day of iTunes, and just checking out a song here and there, it's a good way to connect all the dots (of an album)."Additional Information:
When: 5:30 p.m. Monday
Where: Trib Total Media Amphitheatre, Station Square
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Fights reported, shots fired outside Monroeville Mall restaurant
- Pirates notebook: Is it time for Kang to head to Indy?
- Defense shines in Pitt football spring game
- Water main break causes sinkhole in Shadyside
- Weather, fish combine for memorable opening day of trout season
- MLB notebook: Fox Sports hires Rose as studio analyst
- Girl shot in Mercer County
- NHL notebook: Flames coach Hartley fined $50K for late-game melee
- Allegheny County lakes draw big crowds on picturesque opening day
- Lawsuit: Pittsburgh Public Schools should have known officer was abusing boys
- Former Butler resident honored by tennis Hall of Fame