Try to explain the true origin of St. Patrick’s Day to a stranger, you’ll probably be stumped and mutter something about Irish history, snakes, or shamrocks. Even though the holiday is a religious tribute to the patron saint of Ireland, we all know it’s basically become the ultimate excuse to wear green clothes, eat in excess, party all day long, watch a drunken parade, and don’t forget your green beer or Guinness. Irish party music is a must-have for your St Patrick’s Day party. Whether you want Irish jigs or a mosh pit, who’s your favorite Celtic punk rockers to set the perfect mood? Flatfoot 56, The Mahones, and The Real McKenzies finish distant runner-ups to these three iconic bands.
#3 THE POGUES
The Pogues have been around forever. Originally based out of London, Shane MacGowan’s band has been synonymous with Celtic Punk for over three decades. Joe Strummer of The Clash was even a member of The Pogues for a stretch. MacGowan’s battles with binge drinking, heroin, and probably toothpaste (have you seen him!) resulted in his punk band kicking him out for “unprofessional behavior”. You’ve got to be a mess, for a PUNK BAND to kick you out for being too much.
#2 FLOGGING MOLLY
Real tough call deciding between #2 and #1. Flogging Molly is an Irish punk band via Los Angeles. Their high energy live sets and boisterous punk anthems have garnered a huge worldwide fan base. “Drunken Lullabies”, “Salty Dog”, “Kiss My Irish Ass”, and “What’s Left Of The Flag” are essential Irish party tunes. Why put Flogging Molly at #2? This is a list of punk bands and Flogging Molly has been able to crossover to mainstream. Call it the Green Day penalty, but they lose a little bit of punk street cred by becoming a more popular rock band.
#1 DROPKICK MURPHYS
Ever since the movie, The Departed, “I’m Shipping Up To Boston” has become the official St Patrick’s Day punk anthem. The Dropkick Murphys have maintained their WTF attitude for almost two decades since they began as The Mighty Mighty Bosstones opening act in 1996. The band is actually not Irish, they’re based out of Massachusetts but there’s no denying where their heart lies. Buy your alcohol, put up some shamrock decorations, and push PLAY on a Dropkick Murphys’ CD and you’ll have everyone laughing, drinking, and chanting along in minutes.