Galway Hooker Band The Galway Hooker Band is named after a traditional Irish fishing boat—of course … and shame on you for assuming otherwise. Also? Thank you very much, says bassist Paul Wilson. “That’s what makes the name perfect.”

Wilson founded the Galway Hooker Band in 2007, basically by posting an ad seeking the kind of punky-metally-indie-rocky musicians who were into bands like The Pogues, The Chieftains, Flogging Molly and The Fenians and wanted to play gigs in places with names like The Auld Dubliner, Gallagher’s, Liam’s—and for purposes of this story, Nadine’s Irish Mist in Huntington Beach this Sunday at 4 p.m.

“In the spring, a fiddle player answered my ad,” recalled Wilson. “In June, a drummer and guitarist called. We had a little meeting and a band was born.”

Irish rock is a pretty established circuit within Southern California music, but like similarly standardized musical forms—the blues, country, rock ‘n’ roll, even rap—its outward predictability is also its inner artistic challenge. The difference between a good and bad band is in the authenticity, which often boils down to nuance.

“It takes a certain kind of person to do this kind of music,” says Wilson. “You have to have a passion for it. I get it from my roots—my father is Irish, my mother is Scottish and I was born in England.”

But Wilson is quick to point out that lots of other people probably get it from their roots, too.

“Celtic music has roots in every culture in Europe,” he says. “That large roots system makes for a large audience across a broad age range—from two to toothless.”

When Wilson posted his ad, he told prospective bandmates that he wanted to put together a non-traditional Irish rock band with influences of traditional artists—like the Dubliners, the Clancy Brothers, Flogging Molly and the Dropkick Murphys—for the purpose of playing some shows, drink a lot of beer and having fun.

“I’ve been playing music awhile, and I could car less about demos, limos and record deals, anymore,” he says. “I’m over the drama.”

GALWAY HOOKER BAND • NADINE’S IRISH MIST • 16655 PACIFIC COAST HIGHWAY • SUNSET BEACH 90742 • 562.592.7000 • GALWAYHOOKERBAND.COM • NADINESIRISHMIST.NET • SUN 4PM  • NO COVER