- 05 Sep 17
As Celtic punks Flogging Molly return to Ireland for a hugely anticipated Olympia gig, frontman Dave King talks about having one foot in America in the age of Trump and why he isn’t quite as optimistic as the title of the band’s latest album might suggest.
Flogging Molly were performing at a festival in Washington DC last year when a man brandishing a Donald Trump t-shirt stood up and walked through the crowd. Surveying the scene from stage, singer Dave King didn’t know what to do. A few years ago he would in all likelihood have confronted the interloper, whom he presumed to be a Trump supporter. Now, he wasn’t so sure. Say the wrong thing and the situation might turn ugly.
"There was a time I would have poked fun at that," he recalls. "But for the first time in my career I actually took a step back. All I said was, ‘don’t laugh – this could be your neighbour next year’. I was actually terrified. I would have called that person out big time not long ago. It struck me that, if I did so at that moment, things could have ended up really badly. We’re living now in a world of fear."
King appreciates better than most Irish people how Trump came to be elected – and the threat he poses to America’s founding values. The frontman’s principal residence is in Wexford but he and his American wife, Bridget Regan, also maintain a home in Detroit. He understands the poverty and hopelessness that swept the Orange One into the Oval Office.