* Genre: Rock
* Formed: 1984
* Active: '80s, '90s
* Major Members: Mickey Gee, Bill Wyman, Geraint Watkins, Andy Fairweather-Low, Charlie Watts
With Mick Jagger and Keith Richards bickering back and forth in the press during the mid-'80s (leading many to assume that the Stones were kaput), bassist Bill Wyman decided to fill up his newly acquired spare time by forming an all-star band, Willie and the Poor Boys. The group's roots lay in the series of high-profile 1983 ARMS Concerts (which raised money for multiple sclerosis research), which led to several of the tour's participants taking it a step further and laying down some tracks in the studio. Included in this stellar lineup were Wyman's Stones mates Ron Wood and Charlie Watts, as well as Jimmy Page, Mel Collins, Andy Fairweather Low, Kenny Jones, and Ringo Starr, among others, while Wyman also served as the album's producer. The resulting 1985 self-titled album was a pleasant enough set of 12 rock & roll/R&B standards (including "Baby Please Don't Go," which a promo video was filmed for), but certainly not anything musically earth-shattering. A self-titled home video was also issued the same year as the album, but little was heard from the group subsequently, leading many to believe that Willie and the Poor Boys was a one-off side project. Yet in 1994 (a few years after Wyman retired from the Stones), Willie and the Poor Boys reappeared once more, with the 12-track Tear It Up: Live.
~ Greg Prato, All Music Guide
Representative Songs: "Baby Please Don't Go," "Land of a Thousand Dances," "Sugar Bee"
Representative Albums: "The Best of Willie and the Poor Boys", "Poor Boy Boogie", "Willie and the Poor Boys"
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