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free virtual Detroit St Patrick’s Day concert

free-virtual-detroit-st-patricks-day-concert

Paul Brady’s grandparents founded Detroit’s beloved Old Shillelagh in Greektown, so St. Patrick’s Day isn’t just a big deal in his life. It’s huge.

“I grew up in this pub,” said Brady, a local musician. “My grandparents started it. I lived about it once.”

But when the coronavirus pandemic canceled not only last year’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade in Detroit, but that one too – “it’s like telling a kid Christmas is going to be canceled,” he says – Brady knew he was doing something had to do.

So he rallied a number of local Irish rock bands, including his own Stone Clover, to perform in a free virtual concert, St. Practice’s Day ExtravaBANDza, which will be streamed on his band’s YouTube channel on Saturday.

For those who miss it, the three-hour concert on Sunday will re-air in the Gaelic League and PJ’s Lager House in Corktown, as well as in several local Irish pubs on St. Patrick’s Day.

“We’ve got it all put together and we want to make it free,” said Brady, who said viewers will have the option to virtually tip bands when they stream, if they so choose. “The main thing is that we want to bring the music out. I couldn’t do it.”

In addition to Stone Clover, which Brady calls a “paddy slag” band and plays a mixture of Irish music and rock, there are Wakefire, Bill Grogans Goat and the Corktown Popes. There will also be some acoustic sets between acts.

Ivan Maniccia, 45, from New Hudson, brings his beer to the band,

Brady said that in November when it looked like things weren’t going to get “back to normal” in time for this year’s St. Patrick’s Day, he thought about what we could do. The concert was filmed in multiple locations in Metro Detroit with the help of several companies, including M-1 Studios.

If the bands get enough tips to cover their production costs, Brady plans to donate the rest to a nonprofit group that supports musicians, many of whom have struggled during the pandemic.

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ExtravaBANDza of St. Practice Day

  • Free virtual concert from 5.30 p.m. on Saturday
  • Sweet Clover YouTube Channel
  • With Stone Clover, Wakefire, Bill Grogan’s Goat and the Corktown Popes
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Dusty Kennedy