One of the most ambitious pop music undertakings in recent memory may be An Appointment With Mr. Yeats, the latest album from lauded singer/songwriter Mike Scott and his long-lived band the Waterboys. Merged with a rich and creative musical backdrop penned by Scott, the album features lyrics entirely drawn from the written works of poet W.B. Yeats and is one the most exciting and natural-sounding pop collaborations in recent memory.
Scott, central figure of the Waterboys since founding the band in 1983, has had an illustrious career of which Mr. Yeats is only the latest example. The string of highly regarded albums he and the band recorded such as A Pagan Place and This Is The Sea may have reached its popular zenith with 1988’s Fisherman’s Blues—a stirring merge of the pop, rock and traditional folk mediums—but Scott & company have soldiered on with laudable consistency since then.
With longtime Waterboys fiddler Steve Wickham accompanying him, Scott paid a visit to Y! Music headquarters at this year’s South By Southwest conference for an interview that shed some light on An Appointment With Mr. Yeats--and a stirring performance that proved to be one of this year’s true highlights. The man who once penned a song about the magic of The Big Music is, as you’ll see, still captivated by it.