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Mike Scott sketched out the song in a New York hotel after his girlfriend asked him if it was hard to write a song. The result was a tribute to some artists he admired, including Prince and the writer C.S. Lewis.
The Waterboys were a British group formed in London in 1981 by Mike Scott (guitar/vocals) and Anthony Thistlewaite (multi-instrumentalist). They later added Karl Wallinger (guitar) Steve Wickham (fiddle) and Kevin Wilkinson (drums). This was their first UK Top 40 hit.
The year after this was released, Wallinger left the band to form World Party, who had a #27 US hit with "Ship Of Fools."
When this was re-issued in 1991 it went to #3 in the UK, becoming The Waterboys only British Top 20 hit. (thanks, Edward Pearce - Ashford, Kent, England, for all above)
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