Mr. Irish Bastard Biography
The Band was founded in the middle of 2006 by the singer The Irish Bastard (Himself), the banjo player Gran E. Smith and Lady Lily on tin whistle. These three had already played together in another band with strong folk influences. The bass guitarist Boeuf Strongenuff, with whom The Irish Bastard had also been playing in a band for years, could also be won for this project. Further band members were Ron Calli and Mitch Mackes. Increasing success, coupled with immense touring, lead to many changes of the lineup within the first few months. By now, the four founding members and the drummer Ivo K’Nivo are the fixed lineup, who are supported by the “Travelling Bastards” Itchy Quetchy (Accordion) und the guitar players P respectively Moe Leicester. Sometimes, formers members of the band might still join them on stage. By now, a loyal fan community and a first unofficial fan club, the “Mr. Irish Bastard Street Team”, have been established and the band plays in front of up to 6,000 people (e.g. at the “Open Flair” festival, see Eschwege).
Musically Mr. Irish Bastard are influenced by bands like The Pogues, Flogging Molly, Dropkick Murphys as well as classic punk bands. These roots are being linked in a unique way, while also frequently drawing back on other musical styles, for example ska. This denying of genre-borders is also expressed in innovative cover versions of popular songs like Ricky Martin’s “Livin’ la Vida Loca”, The Cure’s “Why Can’t I be You?” or “Temple of Love”, originally by The Sisters of Mercy. Nevertheless, Irish influences prevail and often traditional songs like Galway Bay (song) or Dirty Old Town are being played. The band members name Sepultura, Portishead (band), Social Distortion, the German Oi! band Broilers and German comedic musician Helge Schneider as their personal influences.
Releases and tours
After publishing their first EP St. Mary’s School of Drinking, which the band sold over 3,000 times on their own, the debut album The Bastard Brotherhood was released in early 2008. Both CDs were published on the band’s own record label Reedo Records. By now, The Bastard Brotherhood is available in its second edition after the first edition was sold out exceptionally quickly. Special collectors' vinyl record versions of both CDs are now also available at Mad Drunken Monkey Records. Further publications followed in Japan, here the CD University of Hard Knocks was released in November 2008 on Uncle Owen Records, and China, where Fortune & Glory was released in March 2009 on Proletopia
Their album A Fistful of Dirt has been published on April 23, 2010 on Reedo Records. Furthermore, Mr. Irish Bastard are featured on the sampler (record)s Almost St. Patrick’s Day, Almost St. Patrick’s Day, Vol. II (both in Germany) and Rising Suns (Japan). American audiences may be familiar with their song "Everything Must Die", which was featured in the independent film Townies by Boston filmmaker Mike O’Dea. A live video of their song "Last Pint" was published on the DVD to the "Tribal Area DVD-Mag No. 8" in SLAM alternative music magazine.
The band's latest release, Never Mind The Bastards - Here Is Mr. Irish Bollocks, is a cover version of the album Never Mind the Bollocks, Here's the Sex Pistols by British punk band The Sex Pistols.
Only two months after being founded, the band was invited to tour Europe with the Levellers (band). A headliner tour with sold out venues as well as a tour with the German speed folk/folk rock band Fiddler’s Green followed in fall 2007 through spring 2008. Further concerts as headliner followed all throughout 2008, when they also joined The Mahones on some of their shows. On these and other occasions, Mr. Irish Bastard’s accordion player by then, “The Dutch Irish Bastard”, would join The Mahones on stage, too. In January 2009 played a full length concert on the German TV-channel “Kanal 21”. This show is also available on DVD. After touring Germany intensively in 2009 and playing many rock festivals like the “Open Flair”, “Vainstream Rockfest” or “Serengeti”, many concerts are already scheduled all over Germany for 2010. Shows have been played in Italy, Austria, Switzerland and the Netherlands. In September 2009 two shows were also played in England when participating in the "Best of Both Worlds" festival at Redhill, Surrey (September 26) and Brighton (September 27).
The readers of the German Celtic-Rock online magazine acknowledged this band's style by voting them "German Celtic Folk Rock and Folk Punk band of the year" in 2007, followed by a second place in 2008 and a third place in 2009 in the same category. Furthermore, Bastard Brotherhood was voted second in the category "album of the year" and the song "Let Go" came in third in the category "song of the year" in 2008. In the category "best live act" the third rank could be achieved in 2009.
Their cover of "God Save the Queen" from the album Never Mind The Bastards - Here Is Mr. Irish Bollocks has been published on a compilation by the Zillo Medieval print magazine. It was lauded by the magazine's reviewer who preferred Mr. Irish Bastard's style over The Pogues, Flogging Molly and the Dropkick Murphys.