Music Features

How the Inspiring Irish Spirit of Resilience can Guide us all Through These Challenging Times

Irish playwright Honor Molloy opens up in an open letter to Irish New Yorkers.

These are strange days of quarantine – strange days, indeed.

With Ireland and the United States separated by travel bans and COVID-19, we're all indoors keeping it safe. That's what we do. We're New Yorkers. The city knows endurance. When life gets tough, New Yorkers get tougher. It's easy to feel unmoored, but music can be our anchor – it unifies cultures and countries, blending melodies, harmonies, rhythms from Mozambique to the hollers of West Virginia to the Fields of Athenry.

In troubled times music soothes souls and raises spirits. What better way to celebrate St. Patrick's Day and the indomitable spirit of the Irish, here and abroad, than with a bit of song?

Here's great piece on Sinead O'Connor, and don't forget the mighty, mighty Pogues and the revolutionary Shane MacGowan which you can read about in "Reflecting on the Life and Music of Shane MacGowan after turning 60 this Christmas", "Congratulations to the Pogues, Your Favorite Irish Punk Band of All-Time," and "Saint Patrick's Throwback: Spider Stacy & Lost Bayou Ramblers Perform in the Boardroom."

Styker Jones has pulled an excellent long pint. "Everything" is a canny mixture of old and new. Dexy's Midnight Runners stand strong in a meld of virtuoso fiddling from the auld sod, Jone's trip-hop beat and his epic take-down of those who "can't separate want from need" – whether they're Johnny-Depp-famous, "Bill-Cosby-and-the-Milk-of-Amnesia"-infamous, "all those motherf*ckers do it for the payoff / points on the back end / spin from the kick-off."

The legend of Stryker Jones first came to prominence in The Dunning Man, published by Lavender Ink. Shortly after the books release, it was adapted to an award winning feature length film, available on Amazon, iTunes and more.

So, pour yourself a shot of Jameson. Amp up the volume. Music unifies the world, starting here in the city that never sleeps – and never gives up.

In this time of global distress, it's important that everyone stay positive and safe, while also maintaining an open heart towards those less fortunate - those with even less security and access to healthcare. With that in mind, we at Popdust highly recommend you visit Concern Worldwide, and consider contributing. Born in Ireland, Concern Worldwide is one of the most highly rated charity organizations, dedicated to helping impoverished communities in the most devastated and disadvantaged communities on Earth. For over half a century they have fought to bring the resilient spirit of Ireland to all people struggling.

Together we rise.

First released in 1984, The Modulators' gem of an album didn't get the notice or respect it deserved.

But it's time to change that, because Tomorrow's Coming has everything a pop junkie desires: catchy melodies, beautiful harmonies, heartfelt vocals, and gutsy guitars.

The Modulators skillfully work in the same musical territory as other early '80s bands such as Translator, Let's Active, The Shoes, and the Spongetones. At a time when everyone who was anyone drew upon the Beatles (naturally) and other powerhouses of '60s earworms, The Modulators did a cover of the Byrds' cover of Dylan's "My Back Pages". (And dig this: Modulator guitarist Mark Higgins played Byrd-man Roger McGuinn's Rickenbacker—just think of the mojo!) Add a dash of New Wave hustle-and-bustle to the Mersey Beat models, stir, and pow!—a magical dose of 12-string heaven.

The Modulators ain't out to change the world—they just wanna make some well-crafted, catchy-as-hell music. For veterans of the scene, Tomorrow's Coming is a refreshing reminder of a vanished era; and new listeners with a taste for Power Pop will go nuts.

This must-have reissue includes the original tracks, scads of demos, singles that preceded the album, and unreleased songs, all remixed and remastered.

Tomorrow's Coming; hell, it's already here. Pick it up today!