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Karl Wallinger: Whole of the Moon artist dies aged 66

Karl Wallinger, the Welsh-born musician who played on hits including The Waterboys’ The Whole of the Moon, has died aged 66.

Karl Wallinger: Whole of the Moon artist dies aged 66
Karl Wallinger: Whole of the Moon artist dies aged 66

The multi-instrumentalist and songwriter, who also fronted solo project World Party, died on Sunday.

Paying tribute, Waterboys frontman Mike Scott said Wallinger was one of the “finest musicians I’ve ever known”.

No cause of death has yet been announced.

Wallinger joined the Waterboys in 1983 and played a variety of instruments – including keyboard, percussion, and backing vocals – on their second and third albums.

During his time with the group, they scored a major hit with The Whole of the Moon, widely considered an era-defining song of the 1980s.

He left the Waterboys in 1985 and, from 1986 to 2000, released music under the name World Party.

Wallinger also worked on Sinéad O’Connor’s 1987 debut album, The Lion and the Cobra, and was one of many artists to feature on Peter Gabriel’s Big Blue Ball.

His writing credits with World Party included Ship of Fools, Way Down Now, and She’s the One.

In 1999, Robbie Williams’ cover of She’s the One became his second number one single as a solo artist.

Discussing the song in a BBC interview in 2012, Wallinger said he wrote it in an afternoon.

“It’s funny. It just sort of came out in one go,” he said.

Wallinger suffered a brain aneurysm in 2001 and spent five years away from the spotlight after undergoing surgery, but later returned to touring.

Writing on social media, Wallinger’s daughter, Nancy Zamit, described him as a “musical juggernaut”.

Mr Scott wrote: “Travel on well my old friend. You are one of the finest musicians I’ve ever known.”


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