Flogging Molly will paint the town green at House of Blues

Allan Lamb

Irish folk/punk band Flogging Molly have just the thing to ring in St. Patty’s Day a few weeks early — bagpipes!

Credit: Allan Lamb

Get a head start on the St. Patty’s Day buzz at the House of Blues with Irish-style rockers Flogging Molly.

The band’s unique sound is the product of lead singer Dave King’s traditional Irish folk music background, having grown up in Dublin. Not to mention his need to break free from those limits, which brought him to the United States in the first place. The band formed soon after the members met at Molly Malone’s Irish Pub in L.A.

The band gained familiarity throughout the country mainly by word of mouth and touring with other bands on punk label Side-One Dummy Records. Their success is partially due to the strong Irish roots in the U.S. and Canada.

According to the band’s guitarist, Dennis Casey, King humorously claims that “the Irish are like cockroaches here.”

Flogging Molly combines instruments from King’s Irish folk roots such as spoons, the mandolin, accordion and whistle with the guitars, bass and drums of American rock.

“It’s not one instrument or member that (defines) our sound, it’s the way we perform together that sets us apart,” Casey said.

This nearly atomic fusion of sounds is what separates them from similar artists such as Dropkick Murphys or The Pogues.

The band is headlining “The Green 17 Tour” with special guests Hot Water Music and The Riverboat Gamblers. The tour is sponsored by Guinness and the House of Blues and is hoped to become an annual tour. The tour comes to the House of Blues, Cleveland on Monday.

The tour is purposely scheduled for the weeks surrounding St. Patrick’s Day, as sort of a pre/post party to the Irish holiday, because Flogging Molly can’t be everywhere at once on March 17. Although, the lucky bastards in San Diego get them that day, as if they don’t have enough of their own mainstream bands.

Dennis Casey says the band is excited about the upcoming tour with fellow Warped Tour alumnus Hot Water Music. The guys from Molly also invited The Riverboat Gamblers to tour with them after seeing them play in Dallas.

“We’ve wanted to play with them for the longest time. I definitely recommend catching their show,” Casey said.

For Flogging Molly, “The Green 17 Tour” comes in addition to a series of shows they played in late January and earlier in February. The tour began on Feb. 22 in Tempe, Ariz., and the bands will be hitting every House of Blues in the country along with several other venues.

Contact Pop Arts reporter Allan Lamb at [email protected].