(Photo by Scott Eisen/Getty Images)

St. Patrick’s Day rocks when you have a killer playlist with a dozen cuts from Irish rock and Irish punk bands to soundtrack your entire weekend.


That’s what makes this list (and this year) special: St. Patrick’s Day falls on a Sunday. What’s better than having an entire weekend to celebrate the holiday in Boston? And we’ve got you covered if you need a bit of help in choosing how to mark the occasion. I went ahead and shortlisted a half-dozen of my favorite Irish pubs in and around Boston here. So you can plan ahead when heading out for a pint.


Because, as we like to say around these parts, everyone’s Irish on St. Patrick’s Day. Even though “around these parts”–believe it or not–isn’t the most Irish spot in the U.S.A. In case you missed it, I dove into a recent report about how Boston is the second-most Irish city in America. Blasphemy! But the numbers don’t lie. Check out my piece here and you’ll see what city landed at number one. I was surprised!


Adam 12 Picks 12 Irish Rock Favorites for St. Patrick’s Day

One more playlist plug before we move on. I would be remiss if I did not point you in the direction of Adam 12’s Top 12 Dropkick Murphys Songs, For St. Patrick’s Day. I have a lot of history with the band and a lot of love for them, too, and I lay all of that out for you. And congrats to all the ticket winners we’re sending to this weekend’s shows at MGM Music Hall at Fenway.


Of course, the Dropkicks make an appearance on the list below. But they’re not the only ones. From Boston Celtic punk to Boston street punk to punk and rock directly from Ireland, you’ll find a little of everything. Happy St. Patrick’s Day to you, friend. Slainte.

  • Dropkick Murphys

    Since I went deep on Dropkicks singles and album cuts on my previous playlist, I decided to go live on this one. Here’s a version of “The Dirty Glass” from late night TV years ago. Jimmy Kimmel represent!

  • Street Dogs

    Not anymore he doesn’t! Good on you, Tobe. Be like Tobe and take it easy this St. Patrick’s Day. And make sure to designate a driver.

  • Darkbuster

    One more drinking song from an Boston punk band. Sure, Darkbuster has other drinking songs. But I chose this one. The opening lyric is the reason why.

  • Stiff Little Fingers

    Speaking of Irish punk… Seriously, you can’t have a playlist like this without Stiff Little Fingers. The pride of Northern Ireland, circa the Troubles. Fast punk from Belfast.

  • U2

    For years, when I deejayed at The Black Rose in Boston on St. Patrick’s Day, I’d close my set with this one. Yes, there are many versions of this classic. But this is always the one I’d choose.

  • Thin Lizzy

    More Irish rock. Metallica does a decent cover of this one. And there’s the Pogues version, too. But I gotta go with Phil.

  • The Pogues

    Have to have The Pogues in the mix on St. Paddy’s. Street Dogs used to cover this one when I’d have them live in session. Already have a song of theirs, though. So The Pogues it is.

  • The Pogues & The Dubliners

    Wait, what? Pogues again? And what’s more, the Pogues AND The Dubliners? In this economy?

  • Flogging Molly

    Would you say this is Flogging Molly’s signature song? I would. A St.Paddy’s staple. And an excellent live version.

  • The Cranberries

    RIP Dolores. That look. Those lyrics. That voice…

  • Black 47

    Remember these guys? We used to have them play for us on St. Patrick’s Day back when FNX would take over The Black Rose. Always a pleasure to hear. And a nice group of fellows.

  • The Waterboys

    Closing out the set with one of my all-time favorites. I love playing this one with my dad and my brother. Hearing it or playing it never gets old.  Happy St. Patrick’s Day to all.

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