Flogging Molly, the Irish-American band who are one of the leading lights of the Celtic punk movement, have announced a short UK tour for 2021.

They will play at the O2 Ritz in Manchester, O2 Institute in Birmingham and O2 Forum in Kentish Town, London, on August 17, 18 and 19 respectively. Tickets go on sale at 10am on Friday, 2 October from www.seetickets.com.

The band was formed by Irish vocalist Dave King in Los Angeles in 1997, and have seven studio albums to their name, most recently 2017’s Life Is Good.

Back in the ’80s, King was lead singer of hard rock band Fastway, which featured Motorhead guitarist ‘Fast’ Eddie Clarke and UFO bassist Pete Way.

The seeds of Flogging Molly were sown when he moved to the United States and met guitarist Ted Hutt, bassist Jeff Peters, drummer Paul Crowder and violin player Bridget Regan, and put together a rock band with a Celtic feel.

Flogging Molly playing live in the UK in 2018. Pic: Gary Welford.

They began to play a mix of traditional Irish songs and rock, and played weekly shows at an LA pub called Molly Malone’s, which gave them their name.

Hut and Peters left when an earlier band of theirs, Reacharound, received a record deal, so King and Regan began to find new members and the current seven-piece band was formed.

Their debut release was a live album, Alive Behind The Green Door, in 1997, and they were signed by SideOneDummy Records after the owners came to a show and liked what they saw.

Flogging Molly’s music ranges from boisterous Celtic punk to more sombre traditional songs, with lyrics touching on subjects like Irish history, drinking, poverty, politics, love and death.

Flogging Molly founder and frontman Dave King. Pic: Gary Welford.

Since 2015 they have hosted their own festival – on a boat sailing around the Caribbean. The Salty Dog Cruise has included bands such as Rancid, Frank Turner, Street Dogs, NOFX, Less Than Jake, The Skatalites, The Bouncing Souls, The Offspring, Buzzcocks, The Vandals, Lagwagon, and Mad Caddies.

It is hoped that this year’s cruise, from November 5-9, can still go ahead. As well as Flogging Molly, it features Descendents, Bad Religion, Me First And The Gimme Gimmes, and many more.

This year sees the band celebrate the 20th anniversary of their debut studio album Swagger, and it is being re-released as a limited edition vinyl boxset on October 23.

It included many songs which remain staples of their live set, including The Worst Day Since Yesterday, Life In A Tenement Square, The Likes Of You Again and Devil’s Dance Floor.

Though their touring plans for this year have been ruined by the coronavirus pandemic, the Swagger set and associated merch is available to pre-order from the band website HERE.

The 20th anniversary vinyl reissue boxset of Flogging Molly’s Swagger.
Gary Welford
ipamusic.co.uk owner