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The Los Angeles-based post-grunge seven-piece Flogging Molly, founded in Los Angeles in 1997 are an interesting mix of traditional Irish music and spunky punk rock. Former Fastway acoustic guitarist/frontman and Dublin native Dave King formed the band with fiddle player Bridget Regan, guitarist Dennis Casey, accordion player (and former pro skateboarder) Matt Hensley, bassist Nathen Maxwell, drummer George Schwindt, and mandolinist Bob Schmidt.

 

Molly's

 

Getting their start playing regularly at the L.A. bar Molly Malones, Flogging Molly eventually took their music to the road; their explosive and passionate live show was the heart of the band, after all, and the band toured relentlessly around the world throughout their career. Their rowdy folk-rock punk revival sound has been compared to the likes of other Irish bands such as the Pogues and Black 47, but the raucous septet opted for its own unique brashness that defied genre lines. Flogging Molly released its debut, Swagger, in March 2000 on Side One Dummy and followed up two years later with Drunken Lullabies. Crafting exuberant anthems to raise up a full Guinness to, King often used personal touchstones -- such as his childhood in a war-torn Ireland, his father's premature death, and an eight-year exile in the United States -- for the band's compelling lyrical content.

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Flogging Molly Playbill

Within a Mile of Home appeared in September 2004, and the band continued to hit the road hard in support. In March 2007, Flogging Molly released the iTunes exclusive EP Complete Control Sessions. Their fourth studio album, Float, followed a year later. The band hit the road, documenting the tour in 2010 with the release of Live at the Greek Theatre. Eventually the band settled back into the studio with producer Ryan Hewitt, and the following year released their fifth album, Speed of Darkness.

 

Punk Rock Bowling

Flogging Molly won't be appearing this year, but click on the poster to check out Punk Rock Bowling Event and Lineup for 2012

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Dave King

Dave King: Vocals, Acoustic Guitar, Electric Guitar, Bodhran

King grew up in a small two-room flat in a Beggars Bush, Dublin tenement that had once been a British military barracks. When he was around the age of six or seven his parents bought him a guitar. King's father died when he was only 10 years old. He left Dublin in his twenties, briefly residing in London and then on to Los Angeles where he would form Flogging Molly with Ted Hutt, Jeff Peters, and Bridget Regan.
After emigrating to the United States, he was without a "green card" for eight years. King was not able to visit his home or family in Ireland for fear that immigration laws would prevent his return to the United States. This separation from his homeland and his mother is thought to be a contributing factor in many of Flogging Molly's early song lyrics, with many of the songs alluding to King's time in "exile". He is married to fellow musician and bandmate Bridget Regan. They reside both in Detroit, Michigan and Wexford, Ireland.


Dennis Casey
Dennis Casey: Electric Guitar, Acoustic Guitar, Vocals

Casey had initially moved out west in 1991, with Rochester rocker Joe Brucato, to shop for a record deal. When that fell through, Casey remained in California playing with various bands, auditioning for others, and painting apartments. "Those eight years... that's when I say I paid my dues," he says. "At that point I just wanted to play out." The L.A. scene proved to be tough. Casey hated his job, had gotten evicted, and struggled overall. Often gigs were a downer, too. "Playing a gig and there's five people there," he says, "and you've worked all day...it's hard to give it your all." A mutual friend had turned King onto Casey. So when Casey got the call, the choice was clear. "I was like, Yeah, f&*! yeah. I wanna join this band right now," he says.


Matt Hensley

 
Matthew Hensley: Accordion, Concertina, Piano, Vocals

Matt Hensley of Celtic punk band Flogging Molly never got picked on for playing the accordion as a kid because he didn’t start until the age of 24. He did almost get shot for it as an adult, though. He says six months after he first started playing the instrument, he was playing in a pub parking lot when a guy came up to him in his underwear – "tighty-whities" as Hensley describes them – and stuck a gun in the accordion to get him to stop playing. “He said, shut the (expletive) up,” Hensley explains. “That’s the kind of (expletive) that’s happened.” He says the perception that playing the accordion is not cool doesn’t faze him. “I don’t care,” he says. “I really enjoy the songs and it adds a worldly, lonely tone to the music.” He says his true validation with the instrument came when Flogging Molly had a gig in Las Vegas and he was playing in yet another bar parking lot. Joe Strummer from The Clash was also outside.



Nathan Maxwell

 
Nathen Maxwell: Bass Guitar, Vocals

"I’ve always been into music. My father is a musician, so I was raised around it. My father is a drummer, so my first instrument was the drums. Pretty quickly I realized I liked jumping up and down and running around, so I started singing in a punk band as a teenager and picked up a bass guitar. It seemed like the perfect middle ground to the rhythm of the other part of the music. I’ve picked up other things over the years. I’ve been playing the ukelele lately, the melodica, guitar. I just keep learning.FMhad a routine of playing every Monday night at Molly Malone's. Then 17-year old Nathen Maxwell snuck into a show as a fan and soon after joined the band. They put out a live album, Alive Behind the Green Door in 1997. King stated that the band's name comes from the bar (Molly Malone's) that faithfully supported the band from the very beginning, "We used to play there every Monday night and we felt like we were flogging it to death, so we called the band Flogging Molly."


Bridget Regan

 
Bridget Regan: Violin, Tin Whistle, Classical Guitar, Uilleann Pipes, Vocals

Bridget was born June 6, 1975 in Detroit, Michigan, and is a self-taught American musician/songwriter who along with her husband Dave King started the Irish-punk band Flogging Molly. Along with violin, she also contributes tin whistle, uilleann pipes, classical guitar and vocals. Regan attended the University of Detroit Mercy before moving to LA to pursue a career in music, where she met her future husband and bandmate. The two reside in both Detroit, Michigan and in Wexford, Ireland.



Bob Schmidt

 
Robert Schmidt: Mandolin, Mandola, Tenor Banjo, Five String Banjo, Vocals

Robert Schmidt, known as Bob, is an multi-instrumentalist and songwriter with Flogging Molly. He plays mandolin, tenor and 5-string banjo, along with bouzouki, mandocello, and also contributes vocals on Flogging Molly recordings. Schmidt previously played bass in the pop/rock band Nickel, best known for their cameo in the season 2 episode of Buffy the Vampire Slayer "School Hard". Flogging Molly is currently signed to their own record label Borstal Beat Records.[4] Their music has been heard on the soundtracks of multiple video-games. In 2012 Fender introduced their first signature-series mandolin. Named in the musician's honor, the Robert Schmidt Electric Signature Mandolin was also designed by Schmidt. Schmidt is married, together he and his wife have a daughter.

 

 

George Schwindt
 
George Schwindt: Drums, Percussion

Drummer George Schwindt, a graduate of Westland High School, always knew he would end up with a career in music. Once he decided on his path, he knew he would not waver from it. Schwindt, 42, has been drumming since he was 12 years old and attending Norton Middle School. Schwindt’s family background is Hungarian, and when he joined the band, he knew nothing about Irish culture. “There’s not a drop of Irish blood in me that I know of,” Schwindt said, laughing. Schwindt graduated from Westland in 1981, then went to the Ohio State University and received a degree in music. He then spent the next 10 years traveling from place to place trying to make his mark in music. He was working in a Los Angeles restaurant when a friend advised him to go to a bar called Molly Malone’s and see the Dave King Band which he went to see every Monday for a year. In 1995, Schwindt learned the band was looking to hire a new drummer. He auditioned for the part and got it. Over the next few years, members came and went from the band until a final lineup was formed in 1997.