The Real McKenzies

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The Real McKenzies
The Real McKenzies playing at Hedon in Zwolle (Netherlands)
The Real McKenzies playing at Hedon in Zwolle (Netherlands)
Background information
OriginVancouver, British Columbia, Canada
GenresCeltic punk
Years active1992–present
LabelsFat Wreck Chords, Sudden Death, Honest Don's
  • Paul McKenzie
  • Aspy Luison
  • Kenny Lush
  • Kirby J. Fisher
  • Barry Higginson
  • Mario Nieva
Past membersSee below

The Real McKenzies is a Canadian Celtic punk band founded in 1992 and based in Vancouver, British Columbia. They are one of the founders of the Celtic punk movement, albeit 10 years after The Pogues.[1]

In addition to writing and performing original music, Real McKenzies perform traditional Scottish songs, giving them a new punk-influenced sound. They have shared stages with many other bands including Rancid, Shane MacGowan,[2] DragStrip Riot, NOFX, Flogging Molly, Xcrosscheckx, The Misfits, Metallica, and Voodoo Glow Skulls.


Founding member Paul McKenzie has been the only consistent member of the band since its inception. The band released its first album, Clash of the Tartans, in 1998.[3] McKenzie claims as many as 100 different musicians have performed as members of the band,[4] including piper Alan "Raven" MacLeod, of the pioneering Scottish folk band The Tannahill Weavers and "Bourne and MacLeod".

McKenzie said in 2014 that he "fired all the Americans" in the band and returned to full Canadian lineup.[5] Despite that claim, Aspy Luison is from Cambre, Galicia, Spain.

In September 2014 the band announced they would be recording their next album for Fat Wreck Chords at Motor Studio in San Francisco.[6] Michael "Fat Mike" Burkett will be producing the album.

On April 7, 2015 Fat Wreck Chords released The Real McKenzies' 11th album, Rats in the Burlap.

Their previous album, Westwinds, was released on March 27, 2012 with Fat Wreck Chords.

A biography of the band, written by Chris Walter and titled Under the Kilt: The Real McKenzies Exposed, was released in early 2015.[7]

On March 10th, 2022 it was announced on the band's Instagram and TikTok that former War Baby drummer Kirby J. Fisher would become the band's new drummer.[8]

Music in commercials[edit]

In the 1990s, the Real McKenzies music was used by InBev to promote Kokanee beer.[9]

In 2021 The Real McKenzie's song “Chip” was used by Ford in Australia to advertise their new Ford Ranger pickup truck.

Music in popular culture[edit]

Their song "Tae the Battle" appeared in the 2008 British-Canadian film Stone of Destiny.[10] Their song "Wild Cattieyote" appeared in the 2004 straight-to-video release of Vampires vs. Zombies (also called Carmilla the Lesbian Vampire).[11] Their cover of the Turbonegro song "Sailor Man" appeared in the 2003 video game Tony Hawk's Underground[12] and the first volume of the Elementality skateboarding videos. Each year, The Real McKenzies version of "Auld Lang Syne" is used as the countdown music on the New Year's Eve edition of Kevin Smith and Ralph Garman's live podcast Hollywood Babble-On.[13] Their song "Chip" was used in the TV series Billions in 2018.

Band members[edit]




  • Pissed Tae Th' Gills, 2002


  • Short Music for Short People, 1999
  • Alpha Motherfuckers - A Tribute To Turbonegro, 2001
  • Agropop Now, 2003
  • "Floyd:..And Out Come The Teeth" A free Fat Wreck Chords compilation CD handed out at the Fat tent on the 2001 Warped Tour
  • SHOT SPOTS-Trooper Tribute. On Visionary Records.
  • Live From Europe, Deconstruction Tour 2003. DVD

Music Videos[edit]

  • "Mainland" (1998)
  • "Drink Some More" (2008)
  • "Chip" (Live) (2008)
  • "The Maple Trees Remember" (2009)
  • "Culling the Herd" (2011)
  • "My Luck Is So Bad" (2012)
  • "Catch Me" (2015)
  • "Stephen's Green" (2015)
  • "Yes" (2015)
  • "Due West" (2017)
  • "Seafarers" (2017)
  • "One Day" (2018)


See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Canadian stories fuel Real McKenzies' songs". The Georgia Straight. Archived from the original on October 22, 2014. Retrieved October 16, 2014.
  2. ^ "Interview: Paul McKenzie of The Real McKenzines". April 6, 2012. Retrieved October 16, 2014.
  3. ^ "Real McKenzies Slag Sh*thead". Chart Attack, November 07, 2001
  4. ^ "The Real McKenzies". Vue Weekly. Retrieved October 16, 2014.
  5. ^ "The Real McKenzies to bring new all Canadian line up back to Lethbridge". Retrieved October 16, 2014.
  6. ^ "Tonight is our last show of the tour.... - The Real McKenzies - Facebook". Facebook. Archived from the original on February 26, 2022. Retrieved October 16, 2014.
  7. ^ "". Retrieved October 16, 2014.
  8. ^ {{cite web}}: Missing or empty |title= (help)
  9. ^ "Interview: Paul McKenzie of The Real McKenzines". April 6, 2012. Retrieved October 16, 2014.
  10. ^ "Stone of Destiny (2008)". IMDb. Retrieved October 16, 2014.
  11. ^ "Carmilla, the Lesbian Vampire (Video 2004)". IMDb. April 13, 2004. Retrieved October 16, 2014.
  12. ^ "The Real McKenzies". IMDb. Retrieved October 16, 2014.
  13. ^ "Hollywood Babble-On". SModcast. Retrieved January 28, 2017.
  14. ^ "Beer and Loathing - Fat Wreck Chords". Retrieved May 13, 2020.

External links[edit]