There was magic in the air at Park Lodge Hotel in Spiddal on September 2012 as the town welcomed back the legendary Waterboys for two special reunion gigs, which were attended by fans from all over the world.
Mike Scott and The Waterboys spent six months in Spiddal in 1988 when they recorded their iconic Fisherman’s Blues album. In his recent memoir, Adventures of a Waterboy, Mike Scott referred to the impact the village had on his life and music.
However, their first ever formal concerts in Spiddal were in September 2012, when Mike Scott, Steve Wickham and Anto Thistlethwaite reunited for a memorable day and night.
These concerts were organized by the Spiddal based Strange Boat Donor Foundation to raise funds for the National Commemorative Garden in memory of organ donors. This is being planned for Salthill.
Hundreds of visitors from Ireland, Europe, the US, and from as far away as Australia and South Africa attended the concerts — in fact some fans attended both the first one at 4pm and the second at 8pm. Erwin Rademaker, who traveled from Holland, has attended Waterboys concerts since l985 and described the Spiddal gig as “the best”.
Other musicians also performed, including the well-known composer Charlie Lennon who played on Fisherman’s Blues,and singer Eleanor Shanley, who released the Waterboys’ song Strange Boat in 2008 to raise awareness of organ donation.
The event came to a rousing and emotional finale when the musicians came together for the song, Saints and Angels in memory of local man Éamonn Goggin, whose organs were donated following his death six years ago.