I don’t know how many bands have taken up playing, on St Patrick’s Day night, from beginning to end, Rum Sodomy and the Lash, the record we made in 1985, produced by Elvis Costello. In years past, Decemberists’ splinter group KMRIA (short for Kiss My Royal Irish Arse, a choice quote from Ulysses and a lyric from ‘Transmetropolitan’ from our first record Red Roses For Me) has performed most of the Pogues’ Rum Sodomy and the Lash – along with bits of Red Roses For Me and most of our third album If I Should Fall From Grace With God - in their home town of Portland. (Colin Meloy is a fan of the band and of Rum Sodomy and the Lash in particular.) This St Patrick’s Day night, KMRIA are playing at the Wonder Ballroom in Portland. Across the country, so are a few others. I made the mistake of thinking that the Conspiracy of Beards will be singing all of Rum Sodomy and the Lash at the Make Out Room in San Francisco, but it turns out that it’s a band called Brandy of the Damned (now called, amusingly, The Bogues) who will be covering our difficult second album again next March.
March 17th is the 10th anniversary of East LA Chicano band Ollin’s rendition of all of Rum Sodomy and the Lash, this time at the Satellite in Silverlake in Los Angeles. We came across Ollin playing in the bar at the Fillmore in San Francisco in 2006 and had them do a support tour with us. To celebrate the anniversary – coincidentally in the year of the Pogues’ 30th – KPCC-FM, a Southern California Public Radio, member-supported station, is devoting a programme to Ollin and their tribute to the Pogues. The show’s called Off-Ramp and it’s hosted by John Rabe. I’ll be doing an interview with John Rabe as part of the programme. I hope to go over to the Satellite on March 17th too.
Off-Ramp airs Saturday 12-1 p.m. and Sunday 7-8 p.m. KPCC-FM is on 89.3 in the Los Angeles area and streams live on http://www.scpr.org/listen_live/