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Flogging Molly at the Masonic, 5 Things To Know

By Gary Graff
ggraff@digitalfirstmedia.com, @GraffonMusic on Twi

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A year after the release of its sixth album, “Life Is Good,” the members of Flogging Molly still feel the same way.

The Celtic rock group -- whose Dave King and Bridget Regan reside part of the year in Regan’s native Detroit (drummer Mike Alonso is a former member of the city’s Electric 6) -- has been a steady presence since its 1999 formation, winning critical acclaim along with a worldwide fan base earned via heavy touring. Its latest outing is along-awaited spring/summer trek with kindred musical spirits Dropkick Murphys.

King, 56, took a few minutes to fill us in on the good life by phone from the tour’s stop in Cleveland...

• A Flogging Molly tour with Dropkick Murphys has “been a long time coming,” according to King, who says it’s an easy fit for a touring package. “We all get along really well, which is really good. We’re pretty mellow, I think. We’ve been doing it for a long time, the both of us. We know we can’t be getting burnt out every night. I think both bands had to find their feet on the first few albums we’ve made, find our own territory and own position. I think we’re both very comfortable now with what we’re doing.”

• King says that “it doesn’t seem like a year” since “Life Is Good” came out, but he’s still as positive about the album now as he was when it was released. “The new songs have gone over so incredibly. The crowd seem to really love them. I think when you mix it with our older stuff it makes for nice entertainment in the sense that there’s not just one-pattern kind of shenanigans going on. There’s a bit of depth there on top of the madness.”

• The album’s title is taken from an encounter King and Regan had with his mother in Ireland just before her death. “She sat me and Bridget down just before she passed and said, ‘Do us a favor; Enjoy yourself, ‘cause I did. Life is good,’ and she had a...hard life but she made the best of it and she enjoyed it. It meant a lot to have that attitude from her when I was growing up. So even though she passed away it was very positive, and we wanted the album to be like that -- Yeah, life is hard, it’s not easy, but there’s no harm in having a good time and being positive about it.”

• Flogging Molly will be touring until the end of the year, but King and company are already starting to think about a next recording project for the band. “We’re talking about doing a few things, maybe for around St. Patrick’s Day. We might go in and record an EP or something like that, just keep things coming out, maybe, as opposed to waiting a long time. Because we tour so much it’s hard getting albums together; We literally have to make the time, ‘cause we could tour constantly if we wanted.”

• King and Regan “try to balance” their life on both sides of the pond but like having the two places to call home. “It’s nice,” he says. “If we’re doing a European tour we can spend more time in Ireland. If it’s an American tour we can spend more time in Detroit. Obviously Bridget was born and raised here; She’s an amazing musician traveling the world wearing the Detroit cap. We spend as much time there as we can, and it’s great to see (the city) moving the way it is, compared to, like, 10 years ago. It’s brilliant.”

If You Go:

• Flogging Molly, Dropkick Murphys and Jake Burns

• 7 p.m. Tuesday, June 5.

• The Masonic Temple, 500 Temple Ave., Detroit.

• Tickets are $39.50-$50.

• Call 313-638-2724 or visit themasonic.com.

Web Site: www.themasonic.com

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