Three Chicago Celtic Rock bands kick off St. Patrick’s week celebrations with a raucous sold-out concert.
St.Patrick’s day festivities got started early in Chicago with a show that felt like more of a party than a concert. The audience was a sea of green and the Irish pride in the crowd is palpable as they waited for the first band to take the stage.
The Avondale Ramblers opened the festivities with a more traditional 30-minute set of Celtic rock. The groupâ€™s lead singer had an Irish lilt which gave the songs a more traditional sound. They covered some Irish classics such as “The Whiskey Jar,” which the crowd cheerfully singing along.
Next on stage were the high-energy punk scene veterans, Flatfoot 56, who played an hour long set of anthemic South Side Irish rock n’ roll. Within seconds of playing, the crowd erupted into a frenzied Irish jig-styled mosh pit.
The mutual affection between the veteran bands was on full display when the Tony Duggins, the lead singer of the The Tossers, joined Flatfoot (who was playing the bagpipes) on stage for a song towards the end of the set. They ended their set with a Hank Williams spiritual, “I’ll Fly Away.”
The headlining, six-piece, group known as The Tossers started their set with a shout out to their South Side Chicago Irish roots. The groupâ€™s larger numbers employ a flute, mandolins, banjos, and a violin insured that Celtic flavor of their music was on full display. The crowd at times during the set would sway from side to side, arm in arm. This high degree of affection between the crowd and the band made the night even more special.