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World Party

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Prestatyn, Wales (1985 – present)

World Party is an alternative rock band which formed in Prestatyn, Wales in 1985. Its only consistent member is former Waterboys keyboardist Karl Wallinger. They are best known for their 1985 international hit single “Ship of Fools”, one of the first alternative rock songs to hit the Top 40 in the United States.

Wallinger was a key member of The Waterboys during their ‘Big Music’ period, which covered their first three albums: The Waterboys, A Pagan Place, and This Is The Sea. In 1985, Wallinger left The Waterboys to form World Party. Although the parting was quoted as being amicable, musical differences may well have played a factor, given chief-Waterboys Mike Scott’s radical shift towards traditional Irish folk music (evidenced by The Waterboys’ next album Fisherman’s Blues).

World Party’s debut album was Private Revolution, which adopted a more commercial sound than that of The Waterboys, and also hinted at Wallinger’s social conscience - especially on the ‘hit’ single Ship Of Fools. Private Revolution was followed by Goodbye Jumbo, which was more successful, and then Bang! which was slightly less so.

Walinger penned the song She’s The One, which was taken to (British) number one by Robbie Williams - for which Wallinger has pledged his undying gratitude, as royalties from this probably outweighed everything he earned from World Party.

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