Dropkick Murphys announce ‘Okemah Rising’

Second album featuring Woody Guthrie lyrics due this spring

Dropkick Murphys will continue their journey interpreting the work of Woody Guthrie for a new generation with the May 12th release of their latest album Okemah Rising via the band’s Dummy Luck Music/[PIAS]. The 10-track album, available on CD, LP and streaming services worldwide, takes off from 2022’s This Machine Still Kills Fascists, on which Dropkick Murphys write original music around previously-unpublished lyrics of the late Guthrie in a unique collaboration, with the band finding a common philosophy in the timeless and timely lyrics of the “original punk.”

Joined by trusted collaborator and producer Ted Hutt, Dropkick Murphys channeled Guthrie’s spirit during the recording sessions in Tulsa. And much like on This Machine Still Kills Fascists, Dropkick Murphys welcomed guest artists on Okemah Rising to help propel Woody’s words, including folk punk legends Violent Femmes, fellow Boston rebel Jesse Ahern, and country songstress Jaime Wyatt.

“Every night, when the audience is singing along with Woody’s words, his steadfast defense of the working class, and his fight against social injustice and the abuse of political power comes across loud and clear,” vocalist Ken Casey explains. “So as long as Dropkick Murphys are involved, Woody’s message will always be heard.”

Okemah Rising’s first single and video “I Know How It Feels,” gallops out of the gate towards an empathetic middle-class commiseration with the refrain, “I know how it feels to work ‘til you drop, and it’s 10,000 bills that you owe.”

Okemah Rising is the final acoustic release from Dropkick Murphys’ recording sessions in Tulsa. This era in the band’s history will be captured in a documentary following their journey writing, recording, and performing the 20 songs they’ve crafted around Woody’s never-before-seen lyrics for these two albums.

Highlights of Okemah Rising include collaborations with folk punk progenitors Violent Femmes on “Gotta Get To Peekskill,” country singer-songwriter Jaime Wyatt on “Bring It Home,” and Bostonian upstart Jesse Ahern (whose forthcoming album will be released on Dropkick Murphys’ Dummy Luck Music label) on “Rippin Up The Boundary Line.” The album comes to a fitting and triumphant close with “I’m Shipping Up To Boston – Tulsa Version.” Dropkick Murphys reinvent and reinvigorate their most famous Guthrie collaboration acoustically without sacrificing any of its punch, passion, and power.

The vinyl edition of Okemah Rising includes the exclusive bonus song “Talking Hard Work.” Vinyl pre-orders via the band’s webstore will include a free limited edition 7-inch with acoustic versions of Dropkick Murphys’ classics “Barroom Hero” and “Skinhead On The MBTA” recorded live at Ryman Auditorium in Nashville. These are exclusive to the Dropkick Murphys web store and will not be sold at retail.

Starting today (Wed, Mar 1st), Dropkick Murphys come full-circle with their live shows, launching Pega Presents…Dropkick Murphys St. Patrick’s Day 2023 Tour with fully-electric rock shows now through March 19th, with the tour culminating in four sold out hometown shows in Boston. The Rumjacks and Jesse Ahern open most dates. Very special guests Turnpike Troubadours join Dropkick Murphys for three of the Boston shows from March 16-18 and Nikki Lane also joins the bill on March 16th.

Dropkick Murphys’ world famous St. Patrick’s Day show will also be livestreamed via Veeps on March 17th at 8 pm ET/5 pm PT.


  1. My Eyes Are Gonna Shine
  2. Gotta Get To Peekskill (featuring Violent Femmes)
  3. Watchin The World Go By
  4. I Know How It Feels
  5. Rippin Up The Boundary Line (featuring Jesse Ahern)
  6. Hear The Curfew Blowin
  7. Bring It Home”(featuring Jaime Wyatt)
  8. When I Was A Little Boy
  9. Run Hitler Run
  10. I’m Shipping Up To Boston – Tulsa Version

Buddy Iahn
Buddy Iahn

Buddy Iahn founded The Music Universe when he decided to juxtapose his love of web design and music. As a lifelong drummer, he decided to take a hiatus from playing music to report it. The website began as a fun project in 2013 to one of the top independent news sites. Email: info@themusicuniverse.com