”To me there’s no difference between Mike Scott and the Waterboys; they both mean the same thing. They mean myself and whoever are my current traveling musical companions.” Mike Scott

European Celtic and rock band, The Waterboys consist of mainly England natives. Mike Scott is the only permanent member of the group, with more than thirty musicians performing live under The Waterboys title. Mike Scott came up with the name of the band from a line in a song on Lou Reed's "Berlin" album. "I just liked the sound of the word," said Mike Scott.

Their first gig was at the Batschkapp Club in Frankfurtin 1984. Their most momentous year, 1991, saw the release of The Whole of the Moon from This Is the Sea, which sprung up to third on the UK’s charts. C.S.Lewis may be the person described in that song, however Mike Scott is not a Christian. Here are the opening and closing verses of that song for your understanding and enjoyment.

The Whole of the Moon
I pictured a rainbow
you held it in your hands
I had flashes
but you saw the plan
I wandered out in the world for years
you just stayed in your room
I saw the crescent
You saw the whole of the moon
The whole of the moon...

Unicorns and cannonballs, palaces and piers,
trumpets, towers and tenements
wide oceans full of tears
flags, rags, ferryboats, scimitars and scarves
every precious dream and vision underneath the stars
You climbed on the ladder
with the wind in your sails
you came like a comet
blazing your trail
too high, too far, too soon
You saw the whole of the moon !

Scott likes to think of his sound as Sonic Rock.

”The Waterboys have gone through three distinct phases. Their early years, or "Big Music" period, were both productive and defined a new sound in British rock and roll. The following folk music period was characterized by an emphasis on touring over album production and by a remarkably large band membership, leading to the description of the group as a "Raggle Taggle band". After a brief return to the "Big Music" for one tour and the release of a mainstream rock and roll album with Dream Harder, the band dissolved until its rebirth in 2000. In the years since, the band has revisited both rock and folk music, and continues to tour and release studio albums.” (Wiki)

”Big Music” is "a metaphor for seeing God's signature in the world.” The Raggle Taggle timeframe split up in 1990 because Mike and Anto Thistlethwaite wanted to take the music in a harder, more rock direction. Steve didn't. The band (at the time of this posting) rehearses in London, and sometimes acoustically in Findhorn.

Complete Member List:
Mike Scott (vocals, guitar, piano etc, 1981-present), Anthony "Anto" Thistlethwaite (Sax, bass, mandolin, guitar, 1982-1991, studio 1999), Kevin Wilkinson (drums 1983-4, studio 1985, 1987, 1999), Karl Wallinger (keyboards, 1983-5, now with World Party), Norman Rodger (bass, 1983, TV and studio only), Preston Heyman (drums, 1983, TV only), Roddy Lorimer (trumpet, on and off 1983-1990, studio 2006), Eddi Reader (backing vocals, 1984, 2 shows only), John Caldwell (lead guitar, 1984, 2 shows only), Martyn Swain (bass, 1984), Chris Whitten (drums, 1984-5), Frank Biddulph (fiddle, 1985, one show only), Steve Wickham (fiddle 1985-1990, 2001-present), Marco Weissman (stage name Marco Sin, bass 1985), Dave Ruffy (drums 1985-6), Guy Chambers (piano 1985-6), Trevor Hutchinson (bass 1986-91, now with Lunasa), Peter McKinney (drums, 1986), Vinnie Kilduff (Irish pipes, whistle, mandolin 1988-9), Fran Breen (drums 1987-8), Tomas Mac Eoin (guest vocals, on and off 1988-9), Jay Dee Daugherty (drums, 1989, 2000), Colin Blakey (flute, whistle, piano, 1988-90), Noel Bridgeman (drums 1989-90), Sharon Shannon (accordion, fiddle, 1989-90), Ken Blevins (drums (1990-1), The Kick Horns (Roddy Lorimer's section, 1990), Carla Azar (drums 1992-3, studio & TV only), Scott Thunes (bass, 1992-3, studio & TV only), Chris Bruce (lead guitar, studio & TV only, 1992-3, recording 2006), Richard Naiff (1999-present), Jeremy Stacey (2000, studio 2006), Livingston Brown (1999-2000), Tom Windriff (drums, 2000-1), Gordon MacLean (bass, 2000), Jo Wadeson (bass, 2000-1), John Baggott (keyboards, 2000), Ian McNabb (keyboards 2001, bass 2002), Ray Fean (drums, 2001), Geoff Dugmore (drums, 2001-3), Brad Waissman (bass, 2002-3), Paul Beavis (drums, 2002), Carlos Hercules (drums 2003-06), Steve Walters (bass, 2003-6), Brady Blade (drums, 2006-present), Mark Smith (bass, 2006-present).

    Studio albums:
  • 1983: The Waterboys
  • 1984: A Pagan Place
  • 1985: This Is the Sea
  • 1988: Fisherman's Blues
  • 1990: Room to Roam
  • 1993: Dream Harder
  • 2000: A Rock in the Weary Land
  • 2001: Too Close to Heaven (issued as Fisherman's Blues, Part 2 in the United States)
  • 2003: Universal Hall
  • 2007: Book of Lightning

    Live albums and compilations:
  • 1991: The Best of the Waterboys 81–90
  • 1994: The Secret Life of the Waterboys 81–85
  • 1998: The Live Adventures of the Waterboys
  • 1998: The Whole of the Moon: the Music of Mike Scott and the Waterboys
  • 2005: Karma to Burn
  • 2008: Kiss the wind (outtakes collection)

    Singles:
  • 1983: "A Girl Called Johnny"
  • 1983: "December"
  • 1984: "The Big Music"
  • 1985: "The Whole of the Moon" (re-released in 1991)
  • 1988: "Fisherman's Blues"
  • 1989: "And a Bang on the Ear"
  • 1993: "The Return of Pan"
  • 1993: "Glastonbury Song"
  • 2001: "Is She Conscious?"
  • 2007: "Everbody Takes a Tumble"


Sources:
Official website - http://www.mikescottwaterboys.com/
Listen to them at - http://www.myspace.com/mikescottwaterboys
Wiki - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Waterboys

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