Dropkick Murphys: A St. Patrick’s Themed Review

My ears are still in shock, but I refuse to believe that I’m getting too old for concerts like the Dropkick Murphys. I’m half Irish; I have a shamrock tattoo (don’t judge), and most of my friends in DC are randomly Irish. (What? I like the accent!) It’s only fitting that I prepare for St. Patrick’s Day by pre-gaming at the 9:30 Club to Celtic Punk. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it. Besides, if you argue, it doesn’t matter- I can’t hear you anyway.


The concert showcased their 8th album, “Signed and Sealed in Blood” with Old Man Markley and Bryan McPherson as openers. If you’ve seenThe Departed or are a fan of any sort of Boston sports team, you’re familiar with the band’s biggest hit, “I’m Shipping Up to Boston” and may have heard my favorite, “The Boys are Back.” The show was two hours of much of the same. And it was fabulous. No mosh pit though, which surprised me, but saved me from spilling my Guinness.

The Dropkick Murphys formed in 1996 in Massachusetts and added Al Barr’s lead vocals two years later. They site their musical influence from the likes of The Pogues, The Ramones and AC/DC- plus bagpipes. Their newest album seems to be more furious, more courageous and, yes, much louder than previous tracks, but with four million albums sold, and packed venues all over the world, they definitely still have staying power.


In doing some background research, I found that the group is also known for their strong political views, which I stereotypically would not have guessed from a punk band, but had to mention, since this is DC and all.

According to Huffington Post, the Dropkick Murphys actually led a movement to encourage rock music fans to register to vote, in hopes of getting more Democratic votes in swing states. Their goal was to  prevent President George W. Bush from being re-elected in 2004. Obviously, they failed, but I appreciate the effort. And I know a few Washingtonians who probably wish the band was as successful in their political endeavors as they are on stage!


While I’m donning my green, my Irish flag, and shooting Jameson this St. Paddy’s, you can guarantee I’ll have the Dropkick Murphys rocking the jukebox at James Hobans. Hopefully by then, I’ll be able to hear again.

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