Sure, Darby O’Gill and the Little People — the Las Vegas band — takes its name from the 1959 Walt Disney film about adorable leprechauns.
Beyond that, the similarities end. Really, they do.
That’s because Darby O’Gill, the band, is fond of bawdy humor, off-color toasts and odes to the joys and consequences of drinking, some of which lend themselves to some very loud audience participation.
But it’s a formula that has worked pretty well for the band since its creation more than nine years ago.
Founder/vocalist/guitarist Andy “Darby O’Gill” Morris — all of the band members have vaguely Gaelic stage names — is a veteran of Kickwurmz, a popular valley rock band during the ’90s. But, even as Kickwurmz was winding down, Morris was casting about for a new band in which to play.
“I was really into the Pogues and the Dropkick Murphys, and I thought there wasn’t a band in town that did, like, the Celtic rock kind of stuff,” Morris says.
“And, there were a lot of pubs. There were all these pubs coming up, but not enough bands.”
Morris figured a Celtic-flavored rock band could fill a “perfect niche” by offering audiences “something you can’t really hear everywhere.”
Thus came Darby O’Gill and the Little People, which features Morris on guitars and vocals, Tristan Moyer on fiddle and vocals, Joseph Brailsford on accordion and vocals, Alex LeCavalier on bass and Jon Whisenant on drums.
Morris says it’s really hard to describe the band’s style of music “because we’re all over the board. We do a lot of different things.”
Irish drinking songs. Ballads. Covers of songs by artists ranging from the Beatles to the Pogues to Jay-Z. In fact, offer up a song, Morris says, “and we’ll figure out a way to make it fit in well.”
Morris admits that he doesn’t really know what newcomers might expect from the earthy band with the cute name.
“I know it’s kind of a playful name, and we are kind of playful, actually,” he says. “There are a lot of comedy bits. We don’t take ourselves seriously at all.
“But it’s also raunchy. We do dirty toasts and things like that. It’s a bawdy Irish band.”
Darby O’Gill and the Little People play Quinn’s Irish Pub at Green Valley Ranch Resort, 2300 Paseo Verde Parkway in Henderson at 9 p.m. Thursdays and 10 p.m. Saturdays, and at Jack’s Irish Pub at Palace Station, 2411 W. Sahara Ave., at 9 p.m. Fridays.
— By JOHN PRZYBYS