It’s a safe bet that not even Alex Trebek’s research brainiacs could conceive an entire category’s worth of answers on the subject of Contemporary Celtic Rockers, unless they cheated and did three on U2 and one each on the Pogues and Black 47.
And that’s odd because Larry Kirwan and Black 47 could fill the category and stump every contestant while they stared blankly at the board and wondered, “Who the hell is Larry Kirwan and Black 47?”
Black 47, the band named for the worst year of the Irish famine and once banished from NYC Punk grotto CBGB for being “too demonic,” came to prominence in the ’90s, had an MTV hit with “Funky Ceili” and built a fan base with a series of socio-politically-loaded albums, including New York Town and Bankers and Gangsters.
Kirwan, the band’s electrifying frontman, is no mere Punk provocateur; he’s written a memoir, two novels and a dozen plays and musicals, and he’s currently collaborating with Schindler’s List author Thomas Keneally on a musical about female Irish convicts exiled to Australia (could be the summer’s feel good hit).
For his one-man local appearance at the Irish Cultural Center (which starts at 6 p.m.), Kirwan will be playing a few songs from his estimable catalog and reading from his memoir, Green Suede Shoes, and his novels, Liverpool Fantasy and Rockin’ the Bronx. Afterwards, he’ll take questions, sign books and CDs and drain a pint of Guinness, I’ll wager.
LARRY KIRWAN performs at the Irish Heritage Center of Greater Cincinnati Saturday, Feb. 4. Buy tickets, check out performance times and get venue details here.