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'Broadcast One' - Dandelion Radio's 1st compilation album

22 hours this month including two sessions and a special tribute to CAN

Artist Info

World Party

World Party
Image from Discogs
Powered by Audioscrobbler™Founded on the talents of ex-Waterboys keyboard player Karl Wallinger (19 October 1957, Prestatyn, Wales), World Party had to work hard to shrug off comparisons with the leader of his former band, Mike Scott. This was a little unjust, bearing in mind Wallinger’s quite separate, but in many ways equal, songwriting abilities. Wallinger was born the son of an architect father and housewife mother. He was brought up in North Wales on a diet of 60s ephemera, from the Supremes, through the Spencer Davis Group, to Merseybeat. His first musical experience arrived in 1976 with Quasimodo, who would eventually lose their hump to become the Alarm. Later he moved to London to become a clerk for ATV/Northern Songs, who counted the Beatles’ catalogue among their acquisitions. He delved back into performance in his own time, eventually going on to become musical director of The Rocky Horror Show in the West End of London. A short residency with funk band the Out overlapped his liaison with the Waterboys. After he split amicably from Mike Scott, Wallinger set out on a solo career that would see him sign to Prince’s management. He also helped Sinéad O’Connor on her Lion And The Cobra set.

Wallinger recorded the first two World Party albums (Private Revolution and Goodbye Jumbo) practically single-handed. The former reached the US Top 40 and the single ‘Ship Of Fools’ broke into the Top 30 (it was hastily dropped by radio in his native Great Britain because of the Zeebrugge ferry disaster). Goodbye Jumbo took equal amounts of inspiration from the eco movement and the Beatles, and the highly catchy single ‘Message In The Box’ provided Wallinger with his first UK Top 40 hit.

Wallinger’s muse, a relaxed and melancholic take on mid-period Beatles, has not so much been updated as revitalized on his subsequent, sterling work, although a minor breakthrough was made with 1993’s Bang!, which featured Wallinger’s only UK Top 20 hit to date, ‘Is It Like Today’, and reached number 2 on the album charts. On Bang!, Wallinger was joined by Chris Sharrock (drums, ex-Icicle Works) and Dave Catlin-Birch (guitars/keyboards). Some of the reviews for 1997’s Egyptology were unnecessarily cruel (especially the New Musical Express). It was by his standards another good album, which, although still locked into the Beatles’ sound (this time circa 1968), featured some great moments, notably the gentle ‘She’s The One’ and the meatier ‘Curse Of The Mummy’s Tomb’. The former indirectly gave Wallinger a worthy chart-topping single, when Robbie Williams’ cover version reached the top of the UK singles chart in November 1999 (Williams’ songwriting partner Guy Chambers (b. 12 Jan 1963, England) was at one time a member of World Party).

The next World Party album, 2000’s Dumbing Up, retreated from the ambitions of Egyptology, and found Wallinger resorting to his pick ‘n’ mix style of songwriting. He is one of the best magpie songwriters around, and the strong influence of ELO, Bob Dylan (‘Bob Dylan’s 115th Dream’ in the shape of ‘Who Are You?’) and even Rare Bird (shades of ‘Sympathy’ in ‘All The Love That’s Wasted’) could be heard, in addition to strong memories of the Beatles’ ‘Dear Prudence’ and ‘Baby You’re A Rich Man’ in ‘Another 1000 Years’.

Source: The Encyclopedia of Popular Music by Colin Larkin.
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Artist biography from last.fm

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