Blue-collar punk


Brick Works, Wednesday, April 11
What must life be like for a traveling punk band?

The Dropkick Murphys’ Ken Casey explains what a busy couple of days is like for the Boston, Mass., seven-piece.

“We played six shows over three days during St Patrick’s Day weekend,” he says. His voice, a thick Boston drawl, is hoarse. “Our guitar player fell off a moving vehicle and sprained his wrist. Al [Barr, vocals] lost his voice because he got punched in the larynx, and all of our equipment broke. But other than that it was great.”

The Murphys have a lot to be happy about these days, with their new album Sing Loud, Sing Proud (Hellcat/Epitaph) getting great reception on both coasts.

“We experimented a little more into the folk influences of the band. It’s still very much typical Dropkick Murphys; it’s just that the other instrumentations [steel flute, bagpipes] we’ve added give the album more melody and make it a little easier for the non-punk rockers to enjoy it,” says Casey. “Parents and whatnot. … They come to the shows oftentimes not just to bring their kids, but because they actually like the music.”

Punk rock embraced by parents? It just doesn’t seem right. How un-punk. But Casey says that appearances can be misleading.

“I think that sometimes regular people are intimidated by the whole punk thing, but I also think that anybody who actually comes to the show kind of sees that it’s just a bunch of kids having fun.”

In the meantime, he said, he needed some much-deserved sleep before making it out to good old Chico.

"We’ll be rested and in better spirits by then, I’m sure." Amen to that, brother.