The Stunning were formed in 1987 and split up in 1994 but somehow the band’s reputation has grown in the intervening years. In the seven years the band were together they toured relentlessly around Ireland building up a following that would make them one of the most successful acts on the live circuit throughout the early nineties. In 1990 their debut album “Paradise in the Picturehouse” spent 5 weeks at number one. Their second album “Once around the World” went straight in at number one and went on to be another multi-platinum seller.
The Stunning have sold in excess of 100,000 albums in Ireland alone. Songs such as “Got to Get Away”, “Half Past Two”, Romeo’s on Fire” and “Brewing up a Storm” were massive hits with radio and the band scooped every music prize and award going. It seemed that international fame and stardom would naturally follow.
But this was not to be. After a series of business disappoinments and self-financed tours of the UK and the US, the band became frustrated at the lack of progress and decided to go their separate ways. Steve and Joe Wall went on to form The Walls; guitarist Derek Murray joined the Sawdoctors; percussionist and trumpet player - Jim Higgins - spent a number of years playing all over the world with Riverdance before also joining the Sawdoctors. And Cormac Dunne became one of the most in-demand session drummers in the country.
By the year 2000, Steve and Joe had set up their own record label Earshot (now changed to Dirtbird Records) and had released The Walls debut album Hi-Lo. They also received regular emails from people looking for “Paradise in the Picturehouse” as their cassette copies had worn out or been chewed in the car stereo. So they decided to reissue the album on their own label. It was also decided that the best way to publicise this was to reform The Stunning for a tour. Little did the band realise how successful this would be. In Sept 2003 they played 14 sold-out shows to over 20,000 people all over the country.
And it wasn’t just the old Stunning fans that came out in force. Audiences were split down the middle with a large proportion who were too young to have seen the band first time round. They had heard the music at home through older brothers and sisters, as well as in clubs around the country where a Saturday night rarely passes without Brewing up a Storm being played by a DJ or by a covers band.
Band website is at http://www.thestunning.net
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