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The Chieftains Celebrate 55 Years Together In Lakeland

Saint Patrick's Day is coming up Friday, March 17.  And the Irish band The Chieftains is getting the party started this Wednesday night at the Lakeland Center.

The Chieftains are celebrating 55 years together. Founding member Paddy Moloney says the music means everything to him.

"You know, it's just like eating food and having a good drink. You know,  I must play music as well to keep my whole senses going. You know, it's an essential part," he said.

The group is known for playing Irish traditional music. Over the years, they've recorded 50 albums and won several Grammy awards, as well as an Academy Award for music from the film Barry Lyndon. And they've made music with some big names, like Sting, Van Morrison and the Rolling Stones.

For their Lakeland show, they'll be joined by singers from Southeastern University and the St. Andrews Pipes and Drums of Tampa Bay.

Moloney calls this tour, the "best show ever." And promises to treat the audience to traditional favorites such as Foggy Dew and what he calls the "national anthem of Texas," "Cotton-Eyed Joe," as well as music to observe the 100th anniversary of the Irish Rebellion.

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