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The Waterboys

The Waterboys

Formed by singer/songwriter Mike Scott in the early 80s, the Waterboys have moved through multiple eclectic line-ups and genre categories throughout their long, boundary pushing history.

Early albums ‘The Waterboys’ (1983) and ‘A Pagan Place’ (1984) were marked by “The Big Music” sound, a title taken from a song from the latter album, described by Scott as a metaphor for ‘seeing God’s signature in the world.’ The final Big Music album, 1985’s This is the Sea, would see the Waterboy’s craft their most significant hit, the Ivor Novello winning “The Whole of the Moon.”

Relocating to Dublin, core members Scott, Anthony Thistlethwaite, and fiddler Steve Wickham began incorporating traditional Irish music, country, and soul into the Waterboys' sound. This new folk- and Celtic-inspired approach culminated in 1988's excellent Fisherman's Blues, marking a dramatic sonic reinvention that polarized some of their earlier fans, but has ultimately come to be considered one of the band's finest releases.

After the release of Fisherman’s Blues, during a break in the sell-outworld tour that followed, The Waterboys core line-up of Mike Scott, Steve Wickham, Antony Thistlethwaite, Colin Blakey and Trevor Hutchinson (bass) was augmented by Sharon Shannon (accordion), Colin Blakey (uilleann pipes/flute) and Noel Bridgeman (drums/percussion). The music made in a relentless fifteen-month period in this line up spanned numberless informal sessions, sixty-five concerts, and a motherlode of studio recordings of which a small part was the album “Room To Roam”.

In 2021, Chrysalis records released The Magnificent Seven, an expansive document of The Waterboys Fisherman’s Blues / Room to Roam band, 1989-90.


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