Formed/The Basement Days:
The Dropkick Murphys started playing together in the basement of a friend's barbershop. Discovering that they were creating a sound that was innovative and fun, they decided to make a go at becoming a band.
Through years of constant touring, attachment to issues and charities and a now-legendary annual St. Patrick's Day celebration in Boston, the band has attracted commercial success and a very devoted following.
Early Releases and Lineup Changes:
With Barr at the helm, they released The Gang's All Here in 1999 and Sing Loud, Sing Proud! in 2001. During this time original guitarist Rick Barton was replaced by James Lynch (formerly of the Ducky Boys) as well.
Although today bassist Ken Casey is the only original member of the band, these transitions were all gradual, and the replacements were all good fits, so that the band as it exists today is pretty true to the ideals and sound of the original lineup.
The Dropkick Murphys and Martin Scorsese:
The band has found their biggest commercial success so for with their 2005 song, "I'm Shipping Up To Boston" (Listen/Download), which was featured on Martin Scorsese's The Departed, which won the Academy Award for best picture in 2006.
In the wake of the film's popularity, the song reached #36 on the most-downloaded songs on iTunes, and has appeared on a variety of other TV shows and at sporting events.
The Dropkick Murphys and their Home Teams:
The Dropkick Murphys and Andrew Farrar:
The band's 1995 album, The Warrior's Code, included "The Last Letter Home," a song that featured excerpts from letters between Sgt. Andrew Farrar, a soldier who was killed in Iraq, and his family.
Farrar had been a Murphys supporter and had asked that, should he be killed, a Dropkick Murphys song be played at his funeral. The band decided to attend his funeral, where they played "Fields of Athenry." When they released the single for "The Last Letter Home," which also included Athenry, they dedicated it to Farrar, and all proceeds went to the Farrar family.
Ken Casey – bass guitar, lead vocals
Matt Kelly – drums, bodhran, vocals
James Lynch – guitar, vocals
Scruffy Wallace – bagpipes, tin whistle
Tim Brennan – guitar, accordion, vocals
Jeff DaRosa – acoustic guitar, banjo, bouzouki, keyboard, mandolin, whistle, vocals.
The Gang's All Here - 1999 (Compare Prices)
Sing Loud, Sing Proud! - 2001 (Compare Prices)
Blackout - 2003 (Compare Prices)
The Warrior's Code - 2005 (Compare Prices)
The Meanest of Times - 2007 (Compare Prices)
Going Out In Style - 2011 (Compare Prices)
Do or Die
While the band produces consistently great albums, their debut album with Mike McColgan on vocals was their best. The album opens with their take on the traditional "Cadence to Arms," and blast of bagpipes and guitars that take the album to an energetic height that it rarely comes down from. In addition to traditional songs like "Finnegan's Wake" and the band's interpretation of a Boston classic with "Skinhead on the MTA," the album is full of fist-pumping circle pit anthems and drinking songs. Do or Die's greatest moment is probably the pub anthem "Boys on the Docks (Murphys' Pub Version)," a tribute to John Kelly, Ken Casey's grandfather and a Boston union organizer.