Sound Scene Express

Bastard Bearded Irishmen Sail Across the Sun

Photos submitted by BBI
Article by Randy Jarosz

You can call them international recording artists now after wrapping up a stint that took them to Ocho Rios, Jamaica. Irish folk rockers Bastard Bearded Irishman tried their luck at the Sixthman Soundcheck contest. The crew submitted a bio and a video eventually landing as a top 10 finalist. From there the general public could vote for the top five and finally cruise guests had the final say on the contest winner.

February 10 the band played a show in Miami before boarding the “Sail Across the Sun,” Norweigan Pearl cruise ship with the likes of Michael Franti & Spearhead, Phillip Phillips, Shaggy and of course Train who headlined the event. There wasn’t much time for the band to catch too much music themselves but they did manage to see partial sets said, BBI drummer Dan Stocker. They performed three times on the boat with a fun take on musical chairs called “Boozical Squares” getting cancelled due to weather.

Anyone that has seen BBI live know they are one of the most electric bands in Pittsburgh, but the 2,000 guests on the cruise didn’t quite know what they were in for. “I think even the people that voted for us were surprised. I mean, we have some assorted YouTube videos if they really wanted to find out what they were in for, but they still don’t really give you a true indication of what you’re in for until you’re seeing it. Honestly, I think that’s true for most live music. So, they weren’t prepared for the speed and intensity of the sets. Or the nudity,” said Stoker.

Playing such high profile gigs like a multi band festival is great exposure for any musician, weather its making new fans or getting in front of the right people in the industry. Stocker agrees, they took the gig for two reasons, “1) it felt like an experience we couldn’t pass up. 2) we hoped to parlay it into more cruises. At the very least, we hoped to make some connections, do some networking, etc while having a shitload of fun.”

“Thanks to everyone that voted for us and allowed us to participate in such a fun experience. We had a great time and we think that we have some of the greatest fans in the world!”

Catch BBI Saturday, March 12 for their annual St. Patrick’s Parade Day Party with Pale Green Stars and The Bloody Seamen. Doors open at 6:30 and the show starts at 7 at Spirit in Lawrenceville. These shows have become legendary, so don’t miss it!

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