|Birth name||Steve Wickham|
|Born||Dublin, Republic of Ireland|
|Genres||Rock, folk, folk rock, country|
|Instruments||Vocals, Fiddle |
|Associated acts||The Waterboys|
Steve Wickham is an Irish musician. Originally from Marino, Dublin, but calling Sligo home,Wickham was a founding member of In Tua Nua (left in 1985 replaced by Aingeala de Burca) and played violin on the classic U2 song "Sunday Bloody Sunday", as well as recordings by Elvis Costello, the Hothouse Flowers, Sinéad O'Connor, and World Party. He is a long-standing member of The Waterboys. Wickham plays both rock and roll and traditional Irish music, and has developed a rock music technique for violin he calls the "fuzz fiddle".
Wickham is also accomplished with the mandolin, tin whistle, concertina, saxophone, piano, guitar and bones. He identifies Lou Reed, Van Morrison, Toni Marcus, and Mozart as musical influences, amongst others,and Mick Ronson. He is described by Mike Scott as "the world's greatest rock fiddle player" and by New Musical Express as a "fiddling legend."
Scott invited Wickham to participate in The Waterboys after hearing his work on an O'Connor demo tape at Wallinger's studio.Wickham contributed his fiddle to the song "The Pan Within" on The Waterboys' This Is the Sea . After the album was released, Wallinger left The Waterboys and Wickham joined the group officially. Wickham invited Scott to move The Waterboys to Dublin, Ireland in 1986. Wickham's influence and the new environment resulted in the traditional Irish music and traditional Scottish music sound of Fisherman's Blues (1988). In 1990, Wickham, preferring an acoustic sound over rock, disagreed with Scott and Anthony Thistlethwaite over the direction of The Waterboys, and the group disbanded. Scott reformed the band seven years later. Wickham appeared as a guest at some Waterboys concerts in Dublin in 2000, and, according to Scott "it felt so good he re-joined the band". The Waterboys now continue to record music and tour, with Wickham as a prominent member. While some of the band's recent releases have been dominated by a rock sound, such as the album A Rock in the Weary Land , Wickham's musical preferences can be seen in Universal Hall and in his own side-projects. Wickham also regularly performs with the Sligo Early Music Ensemble.
Wickham has experimented with a technique he calls "fuzz fiddle", partially inspired by rock fiddler Warren Ellis and the genre of grunge music. Wickham's first attempt at a distorted rock fiddle sound was with a band named Juggler, which existed between 1978 and 1981. Wickham fed his fiddle through a guitar distortion pedal, but disliked the amount of feedback and the fact that it "was very difficult to control". While attending a Nick Cave concert with Scott, Wickham observed Ellis use a fiddle with a fuzz pedal successfully. Wickham, after experimenting with some combinations, settled upon an amplifier, fiddle and pedal combination he was pleased with, "and the fuzz-fiddle was reborn". Wickham has used the technique for The Waterboys song "Is She Conscious?", a cover of Bruce Springsteen's "Independence Day" and, in a nod to Jimi Hendrix's version of "The Star-Spangled Banner", has also used it in a performance of "Amhrán na bhFiann".
Wickham has performed on numerous albums as a guest or band member. His first solo album, Geronimo was released in 2004 (see 2004 in music). The album is named after Wickham's name for his "beloved" violin.
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The Waterboys are a folk rock band formed in Edinburgh in 1983 by Scottish musician Mike Scott. The band's membership, past and present, has been composed mainly of musicians from Scotland, Ireland, Wales and England. Mike Scott has remained as the only constant member throughout the band's career. They have explored a number of different styles, but their music is mainly a mix of folk music with rock and roll. They dissolved in 1993 when Scott departed to pursue a solo career. The group reformed in 2000, and continue to release albums and to tour worldwide. Scott emphasises a continuity between The Waterboys and his solo work, saying that "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 travelling musical companions."
A Pagan Place was an album released in June 1984 by The Waterboys. It was the first Waterboys record with Karl Wallinger as part of the band and also includes Roddy Lorimer's first trumpet solo for the band on the track "A Pagan Place".
This Is the Sea is the third The Waterboys album, and the last of their "Big Music" albums. Considered by critics to be the finest album of their early rock-oriented sound, described as "epic" and "a defining moment", it was the first Waterboys album to enter the United Kingdom charts, peaking at number 37. Steve Wickham makes his Waterboys recording debut playing violin on 'The Pan Within' and subsequently joined the band, appearing on the video of "The Whole of the Moon". This Is the Sea is the last album with contributions from Karl Wallinger, who left the group to form his own band, World Party.
Fisherman's Blues is a 1988 album by The Waterboys. The album marked a change in the band's sound, with them abandoning their earlier grandiose rock sound for a mixture of traditional Irish music, traditional Scottish music, country music, and rock and roll. Critics were divided on its release with some disappointed at the change of direction and others ranking it among The Waterboys' best work. The album was the Waterboys' best selling album, reaching a number 13 placing on the U.K. charts on release, and 76 on the Billboard 200.
Michael Scott is a Scottish singer, songwriter and musician. He is the founding member, lead singer, guitarist and songwriter of rock band The Waterboys. He has also produced two solo albums, Bring 'em All In and Still Burning. Scott is a vocalist, guitarist and pianist, and has played a large range of other instruments, including the bouzouki, drums, and Hammond organ on his albums. Scott is also a published writer, having released his autobiography, Adventures of a Waterboy, in 2012.
Room to Roam is an album by The Waterboys; it continued the folk rock sound of 1988's Fisherman's Blues, but was less of a commercial success, reaching #180 on the Billboard Top 200 after its release in September 1990. Critical response continues to be mixed. Allmusic describes it both as "not quite as [musically] successful" as Fisherman's Blues, but also as a "Celtic rock classic". The front and back covers were designed by Simon Fowler based upon photography by Stefano Giovannini and Sean Jackson.
Too Close to Heaven is a collection of outtakes, alternative versions, and unreleased tracks from The Waterboys' Fisherman's Blues period, released September 2001. The album was released as Fisherman's Blues, Part 2 in the United States with five additional tracks in July of that year.
Universal Hall is a 2003 album released by The Waterboys. It is named after the theatre and performance hall at the Findhorn Foundation, which is pictured on the album cover. The album shows much more influence from folk music than its predecessor, A Rock in the Weary Land. It is the first Waterboys album to feature Steve Wickham since Room to Roam, and therefore the first Waterboys album with all three core members of the post-reunion band.
The Live Adventures of the Waterboys is a concert recording, released by The Waterboys in 1998. Mike Scott refers to this album as an "unofficial release" or bootleg recording, but praises the recording period as a "classic" period for the Waterboys. Most of the live songs on The Live Adventures... indeed already appeared on the bootlegs A Golden Day (1991) and Born To Be Together (1992). It is the only Waterboys album on which member Guy Chambers appears.
Richard Naiff is a British musician, pianist and flautist from London, England who has performed with the bands Soulsec, The Catacoustics, The Waterboys and The Icicle Works. Naiff is a classically trained musician, having joined the Guildhall School of Music at age ten. The Irish music website Cluas.com describes Naiff as "phenomenally talented".
"Fisherman's Blues" is a song from Scottish-Irish folk rock band The Waterboys, released as the lead single from their fourth studio album of the same name. It was written by Mike Scott and Steve Wickham, and produced by Scott. The song reached No. 3 on the US Billboard Modern Rock Tracks chart, No. 13 in Ireland and No. 32 in the UK. A re-issue of the single in 1991 saw the song return to the Top 20 in Ireland, reaching No. 17.
"And a Bang on the Ear" is a song from Scottish-Irish folk rock band the Waterboys, released as the second single from their fourth studio album Fisherman's Blues. It was written by Mike Scott, and produced by John Dunford and Scott. The song reached No. 1 in the Republic of Ireland and No. 51 in the United Kingdom. The single's B-side, "The Raggle Taggle Gypsy", was recorded live at Barrowlands Ballroom in Glasgow.
In Tua Nua are an Irish rock band. Their name is a phonetic spelling of the Irish Gaelic An Tuath Nua, meaning "the new tribe."
"Everybody Takes a Tumble" is a song from Scottish-Irish folk rock band The Waterboys, released as the only single from their ninth studio album Book of Lightning. It was written by Mike Scott and Anthony Thistlethwaite, and produced by Scott and Phil Tennant.
Private Revolution is the debut album by the British rock band World Party. At this point, singer-songwriter/multi-instrumentalist Karl Wallinger was the only member of World Party, and the only person pictured on the cover.
"The Whole of the Moon" is a song by the Waterboys which was released as a single from their album This Is the Sea in 1985. It is a classic of the band's repertoire and has been consistently played at live shows ever since its release. Written and produced by Mike Scott, the subject of the song has inspired some speculation.
Vinnie Kilduff is an Irish multi-instrumentalist and singer-songwriter, primarily known for his work with U2, The Waterboys, Clannad and Sinéad O'Connor. He plays tin whistle, uilleann pipes, guitar, mandolin, piano, harmonica, bodhrán and flute. He is described as one of Ireland's best known contemporary tin whistle players.
"A Life of Sundays" is a song by the Scottish-Irish folk rock band The Waterboys, which was released in 1990 as a track on their fifth studio album Room to Roam. It was written by Mike Scott and produced by Barry Beckett and Scott. In the United States, the song reached No. 15 on Billboard Modern Rock Tracks chart and remained on the chart for nine weeks.
"World Party" is a song by the Scottish-Irish folk rock band The Waterboys, released in 1988 as a track on their fourth studio album Fisherman's Blues. It was written by Mike Scott, Trevor Hutchinson and Karl Wallinger, and produced by Scott. In the United States, the song reached No. 19 on Billboard Modern Rock Tracks chart and remained on the chart for six weeks. It also peaked at No. 48 on Billboard's Album Rock Tracks chart.