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While possibly a sub-genre of rock, and of straight forward Celtic music, the now bubbling genre of Celtic music cannot be ignored any longer. Often called Celtic punk, or even Irish or Irish punk, it is a sound among itself.
The first band to mix these the music and sound of rock with the traditional instrumentation of Ireland and Celtic origin was the Pogues. Playing through the 1980s and the 1990s, the Pogues mixed the edge of rock and roll and the developing punk scene with tin whistles, accordions, and other traditional instrument. Unfortunately, the Pogues broke up in 1996. After many different line up changes, the Pogues started playing together again in 2001. The Pogues have released 14 albums to the day, including various EPs and “Best of” Albums(The Pogues). One of their hit songs, “Fairytale of New York” reached number 2 on the UK billboard charts in 1987, brining the Pogues to huge fame.
After the breaking up of the Pogues, the door was opened for other such bands to come in their place.
One such band was the Dropkick Murphys. Formed in the working class neighborhoods of Boston, the Murphys blended the same rock with Celtic music the Pogues had done earlier. Currently, the Drop Kick Murphys have release 5 studio albums, and have become famous for their St. Patrick Day shows ever year in Boston(The Dropkick Murphys).
On the other coast of America, the seeds for Flogging Molly was being sown. Most date the band to 1997 with the release of "Alive Behind the Green Door"(a live album recorded in the bar where the band started), but Flogging Molly had been playing gigs every Monday night at Molly Malone's prior to that. Formed by Dave King, an Irish immigrant to American, the band mixed the traditional Irish sound with drums, electric guitar and bass. Asked about the band, singer Dave King says that ""If it didn't have mandolin, accordion, fiddle and whistle, it would be punk-rock, and if it didn't have guitar, bass and drums, it would be traditional Irish music. But it has both."(Flogging Molly Reviews). This statement shows the combining factor of the band musically.
Starting with the 200 release of "Swagger", Flogging Molly started to bring their unique mix of music out of California. With a 4 year gig on the Warped Tour, Flogging Molly spread its seeds the way bands should, with constant and constant touring. Flogging Molly is still touring worldwide, and is expecting to release another album next spring.
Flogging Molly has released, 5 studio efforts. 2000's Swagger, 2002's Drunken Lullabies, 2004's Within a Mile of Home(debuted at 24 on the billboard charts), and 2006's DVD/CD Documentary Whiskey on a Sunday (Flogging Molly). The most recent effort, Whiskey on a Sunday, is a DVD documentary into the formation and personal lives of the band. It really gives a homegrown feeling to the band, connecting all the fans with the band on a very personal level. It is this in separation of band from fan that makes Flogging Molly not only an amazing live act, but amazing people as well. The DVD also comes with a CD soundtrack, containing newly recorded acoustic tracks and live tracks.
Flogging Molly is just wrapping up the SideoneDummy/Fuse College Tour, which brought them around the country with fellow label mates Zox and Bedouin Sound clash. Selling out all over the place, this tour is just another one of the measures that shows Flogging Molly's success.
If the success of these bands is anything to judge, the overdone and the three piece basic band are over. People want something more, something much more fun and entertaining. Celtic Rock gives this to people, by giving them hard hitting fast paced rock, mixed with the dancing and jigging of Celtic melodies. Celtic Rock may be a new thing for some people, but for those who have seen Flogging Molly, Celtic Rock is as real as anything, and quite amazing
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