Every dog has his day. Even Street Dogs.
Mayor Marty Walsh declared Friday, Dec. 18 The Street Dogs Day, showing some love to Dorchester’s blue collar stalwart punk rock band.
The Street Dogs have been kicking out the jams for over a decade. Mayor Walsh called them “one of Boston’s best punk bands” in a statement, which puts them among a long list of heavy-hitting acts spanning from Gang Green and Wrecking Crew to the Mighty Mighty Bosstones.
“The Street Dogs’ songs wholeheartedly celebrate family, friends and Boston’s tight-knit communities, especially Dorchester: Boston’s biggest neighborhood,” Walsh said.
"They're the most respectful group of gentleman I've ever had the pleasure of being around,” local vocalist and punk rock advocate Kelley Costello explained. “When I'm with them, and they come together to make their music happen, they're very serious about getting it right and making it sound good. It comes from a place inside them that I didn't learn about at music school. It comes directly from their souls, and to be on stage with them is to open up your own heart and soul to a crowd of people.”
She has shared the stage with the Dogs at many gigs, singing duets about Lead singer Mike McColgan’s grandmother.
“You can feel them connect so wholeheartedly with their fans. They look each of them directly in the eyes when they perform. When I sang with them in Las Vegas at Punk Rock Bowling 2015, after their set, Mike had to step off to the side. I've never seen him so shaken by a performance; he was sheet-white,” Costello said. “The crowd was so insanely excited and unified that it amped up the band to a point beyond what I'm used to seeing. It scared me to see the guys so wild and reactive, but they still hit every single note, just with 10 times the energy than ever before. I'm sorry to say it — only because it wasn't in Boston — but that's the best I've ever seen them.”
McColgan wears his love of Boston on his sleeve, literally, with his Bruins tattoo. His accent is so profound that he represents the Dorchester dialect for the rest of the world to rock out to. He got his start with the legendary barroom heroes, The Dropkick Murphys. At the helm, he watched them rise up like a pint on St. Patty’s Day.
McColgan left The Dropkicks on amicable terms in 1999, when he joined the Boston Fire Department and was honorably discharged from the military during Operation Desert Shield.
Music came calling once again four years later, and McColgan started Street Dogs to have some fun. From that moment on, they expanded into a full-scale, anthemic ordinance, writing five albums and relentless touring.
Guitarist Lenny Lashley made his bones in the hardcore punk band Darkbuster. He also showed the world that integrity is paramount when he leapt from the stage at the Anaheim House of Blues and drop kicked a neo-Nazi who was throwing out a Nazi salute in their mosh pit. He suffered a grisly head wound when someone tossed a chair off of the balcony above. He also suffered a wrist injury.
The rest of the Dogs come together to sing songs of their hometown, praise for our soldiers and stories of yesteryear in Boston through working class pride like a Bay State Bruce Springsteen mixed with the aggression of The Clash.
“This is a well-deserved acknowledgement for a band that could not have any deeper Boston roots,” Wizard Security owner and mosh pit overseer Jeff Freedman said. “Over the years, one of the hardest working bands that paid their dues as they built fans and friends from coast to coast. With pride and pleasure, I am looking forward to working with my friends for the next three days at Wreck The Halls."