Their 1998 debut full-length is where the Boston's own Dropkick Murphys took their first steps toward being the biggest Irish punk band in the world.

Not the Top 12 Dropkick Murphys songs, but my Top 12 Dropkick Murphys songs. Happy St. Patrick’s Day, you punks.


I have a special connection to the band. They formed in Boston in 1996; I started my radio career in Boston in 1996. I even played one of their early singles on my college radio show at WRBB. Obviously, I’ll share it on my Top 12 below. Shout out to my fellow WRBB DJs Hal and Punk Rock Steve for wising me up to the Murphys. Proud punks all around.


I became a full-fledged, on-the-payroll, part-time DJ at the late WFNX in 1998. That’s the same year the Dropkick Murphys released their debut full-length on Lars Frederiksen’s Hellcat Records. I used to sneak “Get Up” from Do Or Die onto my show when I hosted the overnight shift. I would literally speed through my talk breaks as fast as I could just to have two minutes left at the end of the hour to play it.


In the early ’00s, I introduced radio listeners in Albuquerque and Salt Lake City to the Dropkicks via Sing Loud, Sing Proud. I worked as a DJ in both of those cities, programming a Sunday night new music show called Burning Sensations. The Southwest didn’t know what hit ’em. And when I came back home to Boston, I was the DJ who debuted “Tessie” on WBCN during the magical 2004 Red Sox season.


Adam 12’s Top 12 Dropkick Murphys Songs, For St. Patrick’s Day

So yeah, the parallel is kind of cool. I’m proud to say I’ve championed the lads since they became a band over a quarter of a century ago. And, in doing so, I’ve made them part of the soundtrack of my life. If you’ve listened to me on the radio, they’ve become the soundtrack to your life, too. So let’s get into my Top 12. Happy St. Patrick’s Day.

  • Barroom Hero

    If memory serves, this was the first time I heard or played Dropkick Murphys. The song comes from this split 7″ with the Ducky Boys. 104.9 WRBB, 1996. What a time.

  • Get Up

    This is the song I used to sneak onto the playlist at WFNX. Maybe my all-time fave Dropkicks song. Actually, I’ll just go ahead and make it official. It’s my all-time fave Dropkicks song.

  • Pipebomb on Lansdowne

    An all-timer of a song title and a fan favorite. There’s a “Dance Remix” of this one, too. You can find it on The Singles Collection, Volume Two: 1998-2004. It slaps.

  • The Wild Rover

    One of DKM’s best takes on a traditional Irish tune. I would play this for my son and sing along when he was a little fella. He would laugh and laugh and laugh. There might have been tickling involved, too.

  • The Fields of Athenry

    Another Irish standard the lads just crush. This is another one with multiple versions. This version is from 2003’s Blackout. The other version is on Atticus…Dragging the Lake II, a SideOneDummy compilation.

  • The Auld Triangle

    Are you picking up on the theme here? I love when DKM embrace their punk roots, sure. But I’m always here for when they embrace their Celtic roots. And this one’s a classic.

  • The Burden (Live on WBCN)

    Live on my radio show! I produced this one, baby! I even asked them to titled it “Twelvie’s Lament.” They said no.

  • Echoes on "A" Street

    This one’s for Pixie. She’s a Southie kid. It’s a favorite of hers. And she’s a favorite of mine.

  • Sunday Hardcore Matinee

    If you’re old enough to have been at those old school shows, you love this one, too. I’m old enough, but I wasn’t wise enough. If only I could go back in time and establish my punk cred at an earlier age. If only.

  • Rose Tattoo

    See? The Murphys craft a fine ballad, too. Fun fact: I played a ballad called “Rose Tattoo” in high school jazz band. Completely different song.

  • Blood

    “Trouble underground in Kenmore Square…” Don’t sleep on these recent Dropkicks releases. They’re still writing great songs. And those songs sound great live.

  • Turn Up That Dial

    Dropkick Murphys love when I play The Clash on the radio, too. And I love when Dropkick Murphys write songs about the radio. Thanks for the love, fellas. And all the great songs over the years.

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