A Great Fall

This fall is going to be great! I love fall to begin with, the crisp, chilly air, the leaves changing colors gives a perfect excuse to hop in the car and drive nowhere plus Thanksgiving! This fall though has the added bonus of some great shows and album releases.

This upcoming weekend will be the Weston Irish Festival with Langer’s Ball, The Mickey Finns, Flannigan’s Right Hook and many more, including the musician that really got me into Irish music, Eddie Delahunt. Hopefully I will be able to find the gas money in old pockets and between couch cushions to make the 5 hour drive to Weston, MO.

There is also the must see concert with the Dropkick Murphys and the Mahones, who are rolling through St Louis on Halloween night. I plan on being with my kids that night, so instead, I will be traveling 3 hours to Urbana, IL to see them in November. Speaking of November, Black 47 will be playing in St Louis on November 3rd.

Other than the live shows, there are two highly anticipated albums set for release. The Mahones are set to release Angels & Devils on November 13th and the Killigans are releasing Another Round for the Strong of Heart on October 26th. Looks like more couch scrounging for me! From what I have heard of the teasers from Paddy Rock’s last podcast, these should be fantastic!

So a great fall is coming, and hopefully there will be some stuff I don’t even know about right now that will make it that much better!

Slainte

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Thank you Last.fm

This is my first foray into the blogging and social media space.  For a long time, I did not feel I had anything to share of interest to other people, but this last year I have become addicted to Celtic Rock/Punk and I want to share my enthusiasm for the genre and the great bands that exist – many of which are local and regional.  Without the Internet, I never would have heard of them.

To start, way back when in the 90’s, I had been a big fan of The Pogues and Black 47. If I had only known of the some of the bands at that time!  As with most of us, the real world intrudes in our lives and music took a backseat to other things in my life.  Recently, I have felt something was missing from enjoyment in life, but I could not find any music that revved me up – that is until I started listening to Last.fm at work.

One day I was listening to the Flogging Molly radio, and BAM! What a great day – for the first time I was hearing The Mahones, The Tossers, Flatfoot 56 and many others.  As I would hear a band that caught my attention, I would switch to their radio and found even more!  The Killigans and Killmaine Saints, American Wake, Bollox, Real McKenzies!  A fire was lit that day!  I found what I was missing!  Music that combined the power and frustration of Punk with the melodies, themes and anger of the great Irish songs!  The combination of rock with the soulful rebellion songs, the hard emotion of punk mixed with the songs of exile and anger.  My playlists kept growing and still grow daily.

It drove me to find more and wonderful blogs like Paddyrock, Shite n Onions and Celtic Folk Punk helped me found more.  On my last birthday, my wife got us tickets to go see Dropkick Murphys and what a blast! I had forgotten how much fun live music is.  That drove me to find bands to listen to live.  So many of the bands I have really enjoyed are regional and don’t make it St Louis.  But I was encouraged – St Louis has a large population of Irish ancestry, so surely there had to be something here.  If Lincoln, NE could have the wonderful band The Killigans or Rockport, IL with their powerful Screw City Saints, why not St. Louis?

After much searching the internet, I found a band called Rusty Nail.  That got me thinking that I want to help people find a band in a genre that is so much more than Flogging Molly, DKM or The Pogues.  After much deliberation and soul-searching for a name for the blog, here it is Rocking the Craic (pronounced as crack.)  Craic is an Irish term for fun, entertainment and enjoyable conversation.  Very appropriate, I think!

I doubt I will ever be able to even be a tenth of what Paddyrock, Shite n Onions and Celtic Folk Punk are, and I am not trying to be them.  This blog is about my journeys and explorations of a much overlooked genre of music and if I can help a few people find a band or two near them, then I have succeeded in what I want to do.  Slainte!