☘ Flogging Molly, fights, fiddles, friends, family, folk, & fools… ☘


Had a great time last night at Stage AE for the Flogging Molly show!  It was a nice evening out, much closer to home than the last Flogging Molly show that we had to drive to Cleveland for, and we didn’t wait too long to buy tickets this time.  (Last time, we waited too long & it sold out!)  After arriving home from work, Bethany & I headed to Dormont Dogs for a nice quick meal.  (I had the Connecticut Ave. dog minus the onions, it was fantastic!)  We then battled and easily defeated the tunnel monster on the way to the north shore.

We got there early, because I’m generally OCD about getting to shows early.  We lined up outside behind the mob of green & black T-shirts peppered with the occasional tartan patterned kilt or someone who didn’t get the memo about wearing green to a Celtic punk rock show.  There were more people than I had expected.  It was windy, but not unbearable.  We were entertained by the 3 or 4 scalpers passing by asking for extra tickets.  One guy had his leg in some sort of brace or cast, and one guy was on a bike.  They mustn’t have scored any, because I didn’t see anyone selling them.

This was sadly the first time I’ve seen a show with the big room opened up.  I need to get to more shows down there.  (The 1st time I was there was to see Dethlehem and they were on the smaller bar stage.)  It’s a fantastic venue.  You have a nice view all around.  The only thing I’d change is having the floor slightly sloped… but then again I’m just short.  After getting a superficial pat-down at the door, we stopped & said hi to Jeff who was working & not setting any fires.  Then we made our way to the bar where I got a Killian’s Irish Red because I can’t really take too much Guinness.  The wife opted for water.  At a Flogging Molly show?  Water?  She must be the more responsible half.

We joined the pack of Yinzers crowding the merch table as we tried to get a look and get up front.  It was easy to see that the dude wasn’t taking orders from any other dudes… so my wife ordered our shirts and a patch once we squeezed our way to the front.  As I was getting a dollar out of my wallet to pop into the tip bucket, it fell into my beer.  So, dude got a soggy dollar & a dry dollar.  Sorry.  Not that sorry though.  You can still spend it.  I picked up a Devil Makes Three CD too.  I saw them online & liked what I heard.  I asked the merch guy which one he suggested.  He showed me the 1st album & the live one.  He seemed to indicate that the live one was a nice cross-section, so I went with that.

To the floor!  It was still relatively easy to make our way to the center & almost front of the floor.  Things were starting to pack in as we got there, it was pretty good timing & placement. We thought.  Bethany thought she smelled a skunk, and we were too far away from the obligatory dreadlock kid for it to be Patchouli & BO, so it was most likely the extremely pungent weed that we were smelling burning much later. (I bet area Taco Bell locations had a surge of customers after the show.) Our friend Laurel made a last-minute decision to come to the show, so she joined us right as the lights went down…

Brothers of Brazil | Stage AE (Pittsburgh, PA) 05/10/2012

Brothers of Brazil | Stage AE (Pittsburgh, PA) 05/10/2012

The Brothers of Brazil were up first.  Imagine a young Fred Schneider (or Michale Ian Black) on guitar and Billy Idol (or maybe even Johnny Rotten) on drums.  These dudes were quite interesting.  The guitar-work was amazing, & the drummer was quite the showman & very entertaining.  They had this weird samba punk rock vibe… it was odd.  I’d see them again.  I dunno if I’d buy an album.  It was fantastic that they opened & closed with a theme song.  I believe these dudes will do well for themselves.  I don’t think Bethany & Laurel were as amused as I was.

The Devil Makes Three | Stage AE (Pittsburgh, PA) 05/10/2012

The Devil Makes Three | Stage AE (Pittsburgh, PA) 05/10/2012

Up next was The Devil Makes Three.  The crowd stated getting a little more packed in, and a drunken kid beside me ruined the first 2 songs by slurredly “singing” loudly & off-key directly into my ear, until he decided that the crowd wasn’t as into it as he was, and muttered something about us being lame & pushing forward.  These dudes rocked quietly, but they play really well.  They have great melodies & harmonies… even though they were minus their regular bass player.  I have no idea what to call it. Is it folk? Alt country? Blues? Punk? It’s close-to-but-not bluegrass or rockabilly.  All I know is that I like it.  I’m gonna say if you like punk rock, Johnny Cash, Willie Nelson, or old folk or blues stuff… you ought to check these cats out.  They win the award for coolest guitars too.  Cooper McBean played a mean-looking old archtop with what I think was a P-90 mounted in it.  it looked like it had been left out in a sandstorm after someone dumped some paint-thinner on it.  I wanted it.  He mainly rocked the banjo & a tenor banjo.  The lyrics are great.  Check out this comic set to the lyrics of the song “The Bullet”.  I will see this band next time they’re in town!  Bethany really dug them too, being a country fan and all.  I think Laurel was trying to figure them out.

Well, we enjoyed the part of the set that wasn’t ruined by belligerent drunken meat-heads.  Starting at about the same time as The Devil Makes Three, the crowd directly behind us was swaying & getting rowdy.  Oh well, it’s a concert. We’re in the middle of the floor. That’s what happens. Until these testoster-tools behind us start arguing about something.  I heard something about touching or talking to a sister. I’m not sure. Maybe they were bumping into each other, maybe someone was trying to bump uglies. I was trying to pay attention to the blisteringly talented  band on stage. There was arguing, shoving, and a guy getting in the middle. Somebody’s “bro” got in the middle and then calmed things down.  Security was eying them and pointing flashlights from the ramps on the side, but apparently not responding.  Then everything was “cool” and it remained calm, for a song or two anyway.  All of a sudden I hear “oh my god!” and my wife is on the floor on her ass.  I pulled her up and swung around and yelled something to the effect of “Who the [expletive] knocked my wife on to the [expletive] floor?”  Two dudes larger than me in height and girth (one in a kilt as well as a drunken stupor) looked at me with an expression that can only be descried as “oh shit”.  I turned around to ask Bethany if she was OK.  She nodded.  I swung back around to the now large gap in the crowd surrounding the two sweaty ass-clowns and demanded that they apologize to Bethany. They did, looking like a dog that just took a dump on the living room floor, as security arrived to further scold them and ask me if Bethany was OK. Next time how about responding before a bystander gets knocked over?  I guess she saw one dingleberry trying to choke the other dingleberry as she got knocked down.  I would expect this kind of crap at a metal show, but for folk punk?  Way to uphold drunken Irish fighting stereotypes, McPotatoheads.  I don’t know if I would have punched those guys, or what… but apparently my tone of voice or the look on my face told them not to mess with me.  I thought security was going to drag me into it too as he was asking if Bethany was OK.  Later Laurel laughed as she said she thought I was going to swing & she’d end up jumping on the fat guy & throwing punches too.  Maybe we’re all a little too violent?

Finally, it was time for Flogging Molly!  Despite all of the drunken violence, the smell of burning leaves in the non-smoking venue, the guy in front of me repeatedly backing himself into my junk, getting sweat on me from the shirtless guy, and paying $12 for parking, we were having one hell of a great time!

Flogging Molly | Stage AE (Pittsburgh, PA) 05/10/2012

Flogging Molly | Stage AE (Pittsburgh, PA) 05/10/2012

If you’ve never seen Flogging Molly in action, I’m not sure how to describe it.  Seven people come on to the stage and sound like 70.  The crowd really started moving so I pushed Bethany & myself forward & off to the side as we lost Laurel with the first wave.  She found us not too long after that.  Dave King & company ripped through a bunch of hits & some stuff that they don’t regularly do live.  I remember it being a long set & how I liked every selection.  I could have watched them go for many more songs, even after the encore.  I can’t pick a favorite track, I like so many of them.  I really enjoyed “What’s Left of the Flag”, “If I Ever Leave This World Alive”, “Float”, & “The Son Never Shines (on Closed Doors)”, & of course “7 Deadly Sins”.  The inter-song banter keeps things light with songs that can have such heavy lyrical matter all the while to a happy beat.  You get the feeling that they’re all playing right from the heart.  You have this killer group of musicians that can probably between them master any instrument you might have lying around.  Dennis Casey has his hands full trying to compete with & leave room for all of the other instruments.  I was glad he got a spot for a guitar solo of sorts, in with the Guinness chug.  Every time I see a Celtic punk band, I get the urge to buy a Telecaster.  At any rate, Flogging Molly did not disappoint.  We’ll see them next time they’re in the ‘Burgh, Cleveland, or anywhere else nearby.  I know Bethany loved it, I think Laurel did too.  After the show, we ran into my cousin Patience.  Taste in awesome Irish music must run in the family.

☘☘☘☘☘☘

☘ Happy St. Patrick’s Day! ☘


☘ Happy St. Patrick's Day! ☘

☘ Happy St. Patrick's Day! ☘

Some Irish toasts & songs for my blog readers…

☘☘

May you be poor in misfortune, rich in blessings, slow to make enemies and quick to make friends. And may you know nothing but happiness from this day forward.

-☘☘☘-

May your home always be too small to hold all your friends.

-☘☘☘-

May you live to be 100 years, with one extra year to repent.

-☘☘☘-

We drink to your coffin. May it be built from the wood of a hundred year old oak tree that I shall plant tomorrow.

-☘☘☘-

May God grant you many years to live,
For sure he must be knowing,
The earth has angels all too few
And heaven is overflowing.

-☘☘☘-

Here’s to a long life and a merry one.
A quick death and an easy one.
A pretty girl and an honest one.
A cold pint– and another one!

-☘☘☘-

I drink to your health when I’m with you,
I drink to your health when I’m alone,
I drink to your health so often,
I’m starting to worry about my own!

-☘☘☘-

Here’s to women’s kisses,
and to whiskey, amber clear;
Not as sweet as a woman’s kiss,
but a darn sight more sincere!

-☘☘☘-

There are good ships,
and there are wood ships,
The ships that sail the sea.
But the best ships, are friendships,
And may they always be.

-☘☘☘-

Here’s to you and yours,
And to mine and ours,
And if mine and ours ever come
Across you and yours,
I hope you and yours will do
As much for mine and ours,
As mine and ours have done
For you and yours!

-☘☘☘-

May your heart be light and happy,
May your smile be big and wide,
And may your pockets always have
a coin or two inside!

-☘☘☘-

Always remember to forget
The troubles that passed away.
But never forget to remember
The blessings that come each day.

-☘☘☘-

May neighbors respect you,
Trouble neglect you,
The angels protect you,
And heaven accept you.

-☘☘☘-

May you have the hindsight to know where you’ve been,
The foresight to know where you are going,
And the insight to know when you have gone too far.

-☘☘☘-

May the saddest day of your future be no worse than the happiest day of your past.

-☘☘☘-

May those that love us, love us.
And those that don’t love us,
May God turn their hearts.
And if he doesn’t turn their hearts,
May he turn their ankles,
So we’ll know them by their limping.

-☘☘☘-

May misfortune follow you the rest of your life, and never catch up.

-☘☘☘-

May you have food and raiment,
A soft pillow for your head.
May you be forty years in heaven
Before the devil knows you’re dead.

-☘☘☘-

May you have warm words on a cold evening,
A full moon on a dark night,
And a smooth road all the way to your door.

-☘☘☘-

May the lilt of Irish laughter
lighten every load.
May the mist of Irish magic
shorten every road…
And may all your friends remember
all the favors you are owed!

-☘☘☘-

May the road rise to meet you,
May the wind be always at your back,
May the sun shine warm upon your face,
The rains fall soft upon your fields and,
Until we meet again,
May God hold you in the palm of His hand.

-☘☘☘-

For each petal on the shamrock.
This brings a wish your way
Good health, good luck, and happiness
For today and every day.

-☘☘☘-

May the good saints protect you,
And bless you today.
And may troubles ignore you,
Each step of the way.

-☘☘☘-

-☘☘-

Share with me below… your favorite toasts, blessings, photos, music or video with a Celtic influence.  It can be Irish, Scottish, Welsh, or even Japanese.  It can be Celtic folk, punk, metal, rap, rock, traditional, or a blend of all of the above.  I’ll accept anything but U2.

☘✟☘

☘·☠·⚔·✪ Real McKenzies, Goddamn Gallows, The Bloody Seamen, Ernie and the Berts – Tue. Jun. 5th @ Altar Bar! ☘·☠·⚔·✪


That’s right, Ernie and the Berts are opening for Real McKenzies, Goddamn Gallows, & The Bloody Seamen on June 5th at the Altar Bar!

Hello faithful readers.  I’d like to sell mad tickets for this.  The Real McKenzies are right up my alley, these Goddamn Gallows cats look to be our kind of insane, & the Bloody Seamen remind of us our new bff‘s The Botched for some reason.

This is my personal plea to all of you to come out to this show & show us (Ernie and the Berts – the band, and the people) your support.  We’re selling the tickets for $12 a pop in advance, and we hope to sell out quick… so get a hold of me, or get a hold of Erin at ernie@ernieandtheberts.com to score your tix.

I know it’s a Tuesday, and I know it’s not a $5 bar show… but shows like this really help us get our music/name/faces out there.  Don’t you want more people to be aware of the nearly-controlled chaos that is Ernie and the Berts?

Drusky is getting warm to us, and it seems like the Altar Bar digs us… so we’d like to play more shows there more often.  The best way to do that is for us to convince your collective ass to come out to the shows, support national touring acts, local venues & entertainment companies, and local music…. and most of all to have a good time!

I mean, we like to be extra goofy, you never know what Ernie’s up to next.  The Seamen are just ridiculous and you have to see them live to believe it.  Look at the Gallow’s dudes photo & tell me they don’t like to party.  I hear that the Real McKenzies don’t wear anything under their kilts.  You have something going on a Tuesday night that can compare to that awesomeness?

Yeah, you have to get up for work the next day.  So do I.  So do most of the guys in the local bands.  You can deal with it.  Drink an extra coffee in the morning and man (or woman) up.

So, how many tickets do you want?

The Real McKenzies

The Real McKenzies

The Goddamn Gallows

The Goddamn Gallows

The Bloody Seamen

The Bloody Seamen

Ernie and the Berts

Ernie and the Berts

Here are all the details so far, I hope to make a flyer as soon as possible…

The Bands:

The Place:

The Details:

http://twitter.com/#!/AltarBar/status/172831020033388544

Here’s a taste of what you might get…

Concert Stereotypes


Rock Concert!

Rock Concert!

This topic was by my friend Laurel the other night at the Dropkick Murphys Shamrock-N-Roll tour.  I know I’ve had this conversation before with others.  I decided to take it & digitally run with it.  Stereotypes are generally a bad idea, but they sure are funny.  A punk rock show, or really any show… is full of them.  I’ll start a list.  You’ll contribute in the comments.

  • That” guy.  Formerly known as “the guy that wears the shirt of the band he’s going to see”, but shortened to “that guy” because that’s a mouthful.  I’ve been that guy.  I bet you’ve been that guy.  Somehow it’s sometimes seen as cool… and sometimes not.  This is probably more acceptable/expected at a Misfits or ICP show than anywhere else.
  • The “Windmill” Guy.  Generally, he’s in a college hoodie, maybe even with his Greek letters on it.  He’s visibly drunk, and probably double-fisting when not in the pit, flailing his arms around in an effort to be cool and badass by totally missing the point of slam-dancing or moshing by trying to hurt people… and take as much punishment as they can get.  You can also spot them by the off-kilter fitted cap, thank Fred Durst for these toolbags.
  • Old Creepy Guy.  I’m rapidly becoming this guy.  I’m cool with that.  The recent Shamrock-N-Roll show saw a really diverse group of concert-goers.  There were grandmas & grandkids all over the place!  Generally though, at smaller shows… there’s a lone dude just hangin’ out that doesn’t seem like he’d be into whatever’s going on at all.
  • Your new best friend.  Cat comes up & starts talking like you’re old buds.  No big deal right?  You’re obviously both fans of the same band, you’re both there.  What’s the harm?  The conversation turns way too intimate or inappropriate quite soon.  You have no escape.  This guy’s probably drunk.  Hopefully, anyway.  He has no concept of personal space, and is telling you all about the band/joke/logo on your T-shirt.
  • The “Stuffed Sausage”.  Generally a petite-in-height but not in girth young lady with self-esteem issues.  Most likely she started as quite an attractive curvy woman, but donned about 3 lbs. of makeup, pushed up and bared most of her boobies, hung some butt cheeks out of a tiny skirt or shorts… and all of her clothing is about 2 sizes too small.  I’m not hatin’, I’m just sayin’.
  • The nearly blind-drunk guy.  There’s always a stumbler ambling through the crowd that’s just there for beer.  At $30-$50 for a concert ticket without TicketBastard fees, and $7-$9 per tiny draft beer… the whole concept is pretty ridiculous.  This guy generally looks like he doesn’t belong anyway.  He squints to see, walks sideways while looking straight ahead, and smells like the floor of a brewery.
  • The militant lesbian.  I’m not going to say much here, for fear of getting beat up.  The partially shaved head and camo pants are a sexy sexy combo that’s always in style.
  • Lookatmytats. This dude or dudette has spent thousands of dollars & hours under the needle, so they wear as little clothing as possible in order to bare their epidermal canvass.  I would too were I all inked up, I think.  Generally this is accompanied by gauges or other “non-traditional” piercings.  Not to be confused with Lookatmytatas, who needs no explanation.
  • Wikipedia Guy.  This one is always directly behind or in front of me at concerts where you have an actual seat… also prevalent at Pens games.  Wikipedia guy isn’t here to be entertained, he’s here to wow the people with him & anyone in earshot with his knowledge of the band’s formation, various lineups, demo material, and complete discography including various pressings and formats.  I’m in danger of being this guy, and it’s so annoying.  I love my music & trivia… but try to only spout when asked, & not broadcast it.

That’s my starter list.

I know I’m missing more than a few that I see regularly, but I’m hoping someone else will think of them too… so I’m not all alone here.  What about the kid with headphones?  The super-fan?  The crying girl?  The PDA couple?

Please, leave the name of your concert-going stereotype in the comments section below.  If you’re feeling creative, how about a description too?  If you have landed here via Facebook or Twitter & you’re still logged in there… you can comment below with no hassles.  You can also just comment w/o logging in.  WordPress just asks for a name & an email address to go along with your comments, with the option of a URL.

What stereotype are you?  Which one do you love?  Which one do you hate?  Which one are you?  Which one am I?  Have any comments/additions/corrections to the ones I’ve already listed?

Perhaps I’ll compile another blog with all the results, perhaps they’ll just live in the comments section… but I need your help making the list!

McReadverspamtismentply


You may remember, a while ago I wrote to McDonald’s about the sandwich-which-can-not-be-named.  I got an envelope in the mail the other day from my McFriends, and I thought “Sweet! A reply about the McGang-Bang!  A real letter!”

Well, I was wrong.  It was some sort of reply/advertisement/spam all rolled into one.  I was very disappointed.  Then, I noticed that the letter wasn’t to Mr. AiXeLsyD, it was to Mr. Carroll… it must have been about the McDonald’s on West Liberty Avenue’s disgusting restroom?  They never did follow up on a local level like they said they would.  Instead, I get this advertisement for the Mac Snack Wrap and the breakfast dollar menu?  Seriously?

At least now I have a contact name.  I’m going to have to resort to snail mail to get a response for a real live person, I believe… anything other than the stupid “we can’t take unsolicited ideas” form letter would be awesome.

Oh well, the advertisement letter & a scan of the two coupons is below… I popped a “void” on them in hopes that Photobucket doesn’t delete the damn things.  They’ve removed old coupons on me before… I usually always blur out any numbers or barcodes that might make them usable.

McDonald's Letter from Salena M. Scardina

McDonald's - Mac Snack Wrap Coupons

Wow, I’m so honored to be contacted with such an auspicious reply!  I’m glad that my contact in 2009 gave them an opportunity to better understand my needs and expectations!  …that were never properly addressed.  I’ve already seen the Mac Snack Wrap commercials and billboards, so I’m now sure how this letter makes me among the first to know… perhaps there are some people in Appalachia and in Alaska that aren’t familiar with the concept of snacking on “a whole new level”.  I’d like to see some sort of chart on the levels of snacking.  Are they the opposite of Dante’s levels of hell?  Or, perhaps… one in the same?  [Insert your own joke about gluttony here.]  I”ll perhaps have to address this in future missives.

In the mean time, I’m making a call to all of my readers… if you can make me a chart of the levels of snacking, it would be greatly appreciated! I’d love to share it with everyone.

Maybe next time, I’ll go with the angle that I find the proliferation of “Mc” to be disturbing to those of us with Celtic heritage…