State In The Real – Penn State Music Scene

Author - Monica Consbruck


The 24th day band is Flogging Molly. 

“Flogging Molly has always defied categorization…They infuse punk rock with Celtic instruments—violin, mandolin and the accordion—and they merge blues progressions with grinding guitars and traditional Irish music, the music of King’s youth. ‘We’re not a traditional band,’ explains Dublin-born King. ‘We are influenced by traditional music and inspired by it, but without question we put our own twist on it.’ Theirs is music of exile and rebellion, of struggle and history and protest. It’s music of a country torn down the middle, a deeply beautiful and wounded country that knows no quit, and Flogging Molly pays homage to that resolve in every note. Whether it’s a driving anthem like ‘Black Friday Rule’ or the upbeat duet with Lucinda Williams, ‘Factory Girls’, the band’s only criteria for its music is simple and bone-deep: that it matter.” (from Bonnaroo website description of the band)


Dave King – vocals

Tedd Hutt –  guitar

Jeff Peters – bass

Bridget Regan – fiddle

Genre: Alternative, Celtic Punk

Latest Album: Speed of Darkness

Hometown: Los Angeles, CA


Sorry for the inconsistency and delays in the posts!! Travelling all around interrupted my writing schedule. So we’ll do 2 in a row today. The 25th day band is Ben Folds Five.

“Ben, Robert and Darren first got back together last summer to record three new songs for a career retrospective 3-CD set released in October of last year. Finding it to be fun and feeling that old magic, the three original members decided to go the distance and record a full new album at Ben’s Nashville studio earlier this year.” (from

Personally, I can’t get enough of the piano and rock combination and I’m beyond excited that they’re back together and touring, especially through Bonnaroo.


Ben Folds – vocals, piano, and principal songwriting

Robert Sledge – bass guitar, synthesizers, and backing vocals

Darren Jessee – drums, backing vocals and co-writer for some songs

Genre: Alternative rock, piano rock

Latest Album: The Unauthorized Biography of Reinhold Messner (New album to be released this August)

Hometown: Chapel Hill, NC


Today’s feature band is Northern Ireland’s Two Door Cinema Club, a “music-mad trio and their debut album – so fresh off the presses that they haven’t decided on an album title yet – fizzes with invention and sparkling tunes. It’s undeniably pop, and it draws on electronica/electro, rock and Afro-beats without ever recalling hopeful dilettantes, but the sum is greater than any ‘indie electro pop’ parts. The album also re-defines short, sharp and sweet – 10 songs, 32 minutes and no wastage whatsoever – as classic debut albums should be…”

(from Bonnaroo website description of the band)

The sound is funky, fun, dancey, pop and a lot of fun:


Alex Trimble – Lead vocals, Guitar, Synths

Sam Halliday – Guitar, Vocals

Kevin Baird – Bass, Vocals

Benjamin Thompson – Drums

Genre: Indie rock, electropop, post-punk revival,dance-punk

Latest Album: Tourist History Remix

Hometown:  Bangor and Donaghadee, County Down, Northern Ireland


Today’s feature artist is Reggie Watts. This little bio was taken from the Bonnarroo site’s description of the artist:

“Reggie Watts, internationally renowned vocalist/ beatboxer/ musician/ comedian/ improvisor, wows audiences with his unpredictable performances which are created on-the-spot using only his formidable voice and looping pedals. Blending and blurring the lines between comedy and music with his unique lyrical style, LA Weekly calls Reggie ‘the most wildly inventive new talent of the past five years.’”

His music is just really cool from what I’ve heard so i’m super pumped to hear him live.

Members: Reggie Watts – vocals

Genre: Observational comedy, surreal comedy, electronic music, trip hop, soul

Latest Album: Why S*** So Crazy?

Hometown:  Brooklyn, NY


Today’s featured band is Fitz & the Tantrums. This band got it’s start by adopting an organ from a neighbor. Once it was moved into his living room, Fitz, who already had musical and studio experience having worked with Beck’s producer, knew that this was the beginning of his singing career and so formed the band. Since then, the band has toured with Maroon 5 (having personally been asked by lead singer Adam Levine),  played to thousands at Colorado’s world famous Red Rocks Amphitheatre, shared the stage New Year’s Eve with Sharon Jones and the Dap Kings, and performed on KCRW’s esteemed show, Morning Becomes Eclectic. This band’s unique combination of funk, pop, and organ makes them one of a kind and irresistible.


Fitz – Lead Vocals

Noelle Scaggs – Vocals

John Wicks – Drums

James King – Saxophone, Flute

Joseph Karnes – Bass

Jeremy Ruzumna – Keyboards

Genre: Pop

Latest Album: Pickin’ Up The Pieces

Hometown: Los Angeles, Ca