Black 47 & CELTIC CRUSH Newsletter 
March Madness 2014

 One more combined Black 47/Celtic Crush Newsletter during March Madness!   


Black 47 will appear on The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon on March 17th.  We'll be shuttling between BB Kings and the NBC studios most of that evening.  SiriusXM will also broadcast our last St. Patrick's Day show live from BB's. 


If you'd like to wear a Black 47 T-shirt for the great day go to SHOP at  As has been said on more than one occasion, "wear a Black 47

Shirt and you'll never be alone."  


Thanks so much to all of you who've come to the recent shows.  We've been having a blast, and remember - feel free to take pictures or tape the show - they're neve the same.  See you at World Caf�, Thursday; Stone Pony, Friday; Ocean Mist, Saturday; Empire City Casino, Sunday; BB King's Monday.  Some of these will be our last gigs in those clubs, so you can be assured, they will be special.


Transport, written by Tom Keneally & Larry Kirwan, continues its run at The Irish Repertory Theatre in NYC until April 6th.  Get your ticket now at  


All the best, 


larry kirwan
LAST CALL is Black 47's final album. You can buy the CD or download the 13 tracks at  You may also find the lyrics, chord charts, stories, pictures of players and guests at  LAST CALL is on sale at all Black 47 gigs.

★★★★ On "Last Call," Black 47 serves a 200 proof cocktail made with a shot of funk and two fingers of Irish malarkey thrown in for good measure. Larry Kirwan saves the best for last, using roots, rock, and reggae to bring the final curtain down on the most influential Irish American band in history."  Mike Farragher/Irish Voice

All Black 47 CDs/DVDs/T-Shirts/Hoodies/and Larry Kirwan Books/CDs available 

BB KING's, 42nd Street/Times Square 
March 17th - Show 7pm, Doors 5pm (Right after the Parade) 
Tickets on sale now at the club or

"I'll love you forever on St. Patrick's Day" 
Written by Thomas Keneally of Schindler's List fame, Transport tells the story of four Irish women deported to the Australian penal colonies in 1838. With an original score by Black 47's Larry Kirwan Transport allows you to experience a forgotten, but vital, footnote of the Irish experience.  At the Irish Rep, 132 W. 22nd St., NYC Wed-Sun until April 6.

For songs, action and commentary:

Buy Tickets Now at or call 212-727-2737

Upcoming Shows

World Cafe Live
with Barleyjuice
Philadelphia, PA

March 14
Stone Pony
Asbury Park, NJ

March 15
Ocean Mist
Matunuck, RI

Empire City Casino
with Shilelagh Law
Yonkers, NY

March 17
BB Kings
New York, NY

March 21
Bridge Street Live
Collinsville, CT

March 22
Shamrock Fest
with Dropkick Murphys
Washington DC

April 12
Albertus Magnus High School
Bardonia, NY

April 19
Stage One
Fairfield, CT

MAY 25-26


This ramble is booking up fast!! Don't leave it too late! 
Nov. 18-23, Galway, Donegal, Derry, Belfast, Wexford Dublin 
For a brochure call Hammond Tours 866-486-8772 or email

  [email protected]      

                                                           A MESSAGE TO YOU RUDY

            Wexford has long had an association with Australia. It began soon after the uprising of 1798 - when Lord Cornwallis declared an end to executions those rebels still in captivity were shipped off to the Botany Bay penal colony.  They took their grudges with them and in 1804 rose up again, only to be defeated on Rouse Hill thereafter rechristened Vinegar Hill in memory of the last battle of the Wexford rebellion.  


            In the 1950's many more Wexfordians took advantage of the subsidized Ten Pound Boat Fares for those who promised to settle in Australia, perhaps lured by the visions of spending Christmas on a sweltering beach rather than freezing in our December dampness.


            One other exodus was less known though often spoken about by my grandfather. It was an effort by successive English governments to seed their Australian colony by sentencing women to seven years penal servitude often for offences as trifling as stealing a pound of butter.  With no chance of returning home the hope was that the unfortunate women would breed with male convicts, their offspring eventually providing cheap labor in this far off outpost of the empire.  


            Thus when Tom Keneally invited me to collaborate on a musical concerning four of these exiled Irish women I was familiar with the situation. Tom, who wrote the novel, Schindler's List, had a more personal connection. In 1838, his wife's great-grandmother, had been sent from Cork to Sydney aboard the convict transport ship, Whisper for stealing a bolt of cloth.  It would take many years of writing and revision before Transport was deemed stage worthy. We began with a concert version at the Irish Arts Center, before heading to Sydney's Sidetrack Theatre for a full workshop. Transport is currently receiving its world premiere production at New York's Irish Repertory Theatre.  


            My job was to turn the penal voyage of the four women into music, hopefully of an uplifting nature. Oddly enough, this was less difficult than it might seem; for the English authorities, at a minimum, wished to deliver the convicts alive and kicking - dead ladies tend not to make good breeders.  A fiddler was provided to many ships - dancing, it was felt, would keep this valuable human cargo in good nick for the criminal suitors who awaited them.  


            Was there romance on board? Inevitably, when you cramp single men and women aboard an overcrowded, sweltering vessel for four months; not to mention that sailors were often allowed to share their berths with a "sea wife".  Nonetheless, the misery could be profound - women had often been torn from husbands and children with no chance of reunion. Keneally's genius is that you recognize the DNA of the modern Australian character in the four women he and director, Tony Walton bring to life at the Rep.  


            As the ship leaves the Northern hemisphere the ladies begin to turn the tables on their jailers - and their own destinies. For ironically, they are the lucky ones, escaping from a country teetering towards famine and starvation.  How to summon this scenario into music? It would have been easy to recreate an Australian Black 47 but the nautical setting demanded a different style. In the end I employed a mixture of Irish Traditional, British Music Hall and Show Tunes to capture both the tragedy and ultimate redemptive nature of the story.  


            Did Keneally and I succeed? There are nights when I think we came close, others when I despair of ever transforming such a complex subject into a coherent musical. But the audiences have been solidly behind Transport with either full or sold-out houses the norm.  In the end, though, all that matters is that the story of these brave Irish women is finally being told. They were abandoned people - dead to those they were torn away from. Some entered second marriages in Australia and their descendants are only now communicating with distant cousins back in Ireland.


             Perhaps, the most telling lyric in the show is delivered by Kate O'Hare, a young revolutionary, when she sings about her fianc�e and the country she will never see again:


But I will go on

                        I will put this pain behind me

                        Now that you're lost

                        Lost unto me...



Listen to Larry Kirwan host Celtic Crush on SiriusXM The Spectrum, Ch. 28, Saturdays 7-10amET, Tuesdays 11pmET & ON DEMAND
For full details


Mo Bhron (Intro)Black 47
Bullfrog BluesRory Gallagher
Morning StarThe Bothy Band
Morning Has BrokenCat Stevens
Acoustic Motor BikeLuka Bloom
The Sligo MaidThe Dubliners
Johnston's Motor CarThe Clancy Brothers & Tommy Makem
Rainy Night in SohoThe Pogues
Nobody's BabyNowNick Cave & The Bad Seeds
So Long MarianneLeonard Cohen
US BluesWake The Dead
Forgiven Not ForgottenThe Corrs
First Light of the DayPaddy A Go Go
Salsa O'KeefeBlack 47
El Agua De La VidaSalsa Celtica
Borwn Eyed GirlVan Morrison
Breast PlateMichael Brunnock
And I Love You SoPauline Scannlon
Sing All Our Cares AwayDamien Dempsey
Martin Roachford'sPeatbog Faeries
Faithful DepartedPhilip Chevron
Ceili MorThe Indulgers
Roisin DubhThin Lizzy
Tin SoldierThe Majones
The Night The Showbands DiedBlack 47
Crazy Man MichaelFairport Convention
I Can See Clearly NowHothouse Flowers
Joyce Country Ceili BandThe Saw Doctors
Pretty Little GirlsThe Chieftains
On The WayBeoga
Sleepy MaggieAshley MacIsaacs
Glistening FieldsIarla O'Lionaird
Sep-13The Waterboys
Electric LandladyKila
The Times They Are ChangingFlogging Molly
Peg O' My HeartDropkick Murphys
Sullivan's LakeGarahan's Ghost
Culchie PrinceBlack 47
Pump It UpElvis Costello
Spanish PointDonal Lunny

"In the dark and deadly days of Black '47"

Join Our Mailing List
    Black 47BlogGigs RSS