Sound Scene Express

Bastard Bearded Irishmen Go Big During Annual Bash

Bastard Bearded Irishmen
Parade Day Party
Rex Theater
March 14, 2015

Photos and review by Randy Jarosz

Only the Bastard Bearded Irishmen can out do themselves. Their St. Patrick’s Parade Day Party shows can’t be rivaled and they only get better every year. Kicking off the evening was The Commonheart led by Clinton Clegg followed by Washington, D.C.’s Black Masala, complete with trombone, trumpet, saxophone and a sultry lead vocalist. Western Pennsylvania Firefighters Memorial Honor Guard brought down the house with some bagpiping of “Amazing Grace,” before BBI took the stage.

Spotlights were on Jimmy Bastard, Danny Rectenwald and Paul Dvorchak as they gathered for irish folk ballad, “The Auld Triangle,” sung a cappella. BBI has always had a go big or go home mentality, so it may not have been surprising to see an actual bar on stage, with Jameson Irish Whiskey signs and a neon lit “Pub Open” sign. And, yes they had a bartender too, from Iron City.

Former member Jon Pitcher joined BBI on stage for shots of Jameson and some tunes throughout the night including the song he wrote, “Paddy O’Shea.” “We bust on each other 364 days a year, but these 6 guys on stage are my family,” said Jimmy Bastard. Bastard, is lead guitarist and vocalist, with Danny Rectenwald on mandolin, Paul Dvorchak on fiddle, Ben Jaber on bass, Dan Stocker on drums, while newest member Mike Hall, brings an added element to the mix, with the accordion.

Rectenwald traded shirts with female fans throughout the evening, finishing off with a tank top, shamrock tights and a green skirt. Jimmy followed suit wearing a green girdle, tossed on stage by a fan. Rectenwald and Jimmy feed off one another, one-upping each antic, with fans benefitting the most from their over the top shenanigans.

BBI played old favorites “Sail On, Sail Away,” “Mutiny,” “Drinkem’, Drankem, Drunkem’,” and instant classics “Switchblade Molly,” “Red,” “Tomorrow,” and “Mama.” The 2 and a half hour set finished off with encore “Drinkin’ at 11,” and “Sweet Child.”

Do yourself a favor and catch these guys in 2015, your guaranteed to leave a fan, if you aren’t already. You can catch BBI in Austintown, OH March 17, State College March 20, and March 21 for Shamrock Fest in Washington, D.C.

Whiskey, Rum, Bourbon, Beer

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