Posted May 14, 2009 in Music




Dylan Blue Oberbeck (guitar, mandolin, backing vocals); Julian Johnson (double bass); Danny Oberbeck (drums, penny whistle; lead vocals).


Pompadours, Flogging Molly, traditional pub tunes, old school punk, Eire, a little jazz and country, plus “a quick dash of Tapatio.”


Who’s Yer Paddy, Now? (Wooden Ewe/Artisans, 2009)



Whip out a Swiss Army knife (OK, any cheap knock-off that you’ve nabbed at a local swap meet will probably suffice), carefully pry it open and what’s there? It’s likely to reveal a corkscrew, a few blades of various sizes, a toothpick, a pair o’ tweezers and even some tiny scissors. It’s an all-in-one contraption, but in the end, it’s still primarily a knife. You followin’ us?


The multi-talented members of Craic Haus (pronounced “crack house,” though it actually translates to “fun house”) have similar universal utility: These jacks-of-all-trades closely clutch an ability to skillfully mutate into three distinct forms, yet still retain their rockin’ values. The family affair includes lead vocalist/drummer Danny Oberbeck with teenaged son Dylan holding down the fort on the guitar and backing vocals, plus the equally-young double bassist Julian Johnson (who’s crankin’ bass, on-the-double).


To explain: The standard rockin’ Craic Haus iteration—a.k.a. the “shamrockabilly” group—is the touring ensemble (and the one performing on current releases). Craic Haus Deluxe is the four-hour pub party cover band with Lief Frederick on bass. And there’s also Craic Haus Traditional, a rootsy Irish band that’ll occasionally feature Julian’s twin brother Adrian. (You still followin’ us?)


These too-many-talents have already covered slots on the East Coast and in Vegas, not to mention carving quite a niche in the vicinity, including spots at the Vibe in Riverside, Liam’s in Colton and Angelo’s in Pomona. (They not only cover a number of styles, but plenty of counties, too.)


But one of their most memoriable dates was actually a last-minute benefit for the late Nekromantix drummer Andy Martinez. “The crowd was huge,” Danny recalls. “At the top of our set, the crowd rushed the stage and began singing along to our original songs. They knew the words better than we did. This was the first time this happened to us and we stood on stage looking at each other thinking, ‘How do they know all of our songs?’ Thank you, MySpace!” (Waleed Rashidi)


Craic Haus Deluxe at Liam’s Irish Pub, 1087 S. Mount Vernon, Colton, (909) 422-9900;, Fri., May 22, 9PM.


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