Karl Wallinger: Tributes as World Party founder and Waterboys keyboard player dies aged 66

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Karl Wallinger of The Waterboys and World Party has died aged 66

Singer-songwriter Karl Wallinger has died aged 66 - as musicians have queued up to pay tribute to him

Keyboard player Wallinger joined The Waterboys in 1983 and wrote the music for the hit Don’t Bang The Drum during his time with the band. He then founded World Party in 1986, with the first album, Private Revolution including songs such as Ship of Fools. World Party - which effectively was Wallinger - had a hit in 1989 with Is It Like Today?, and also wrote the song She's The One, which was a number one for Robbie Williams in 1999.

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Wallinger died on Sunday. In 2001, he was diagnosed with a brain aneurysm and spent five years away from the spotlight following surgery, although World Party went back to playing live after his recovery. He is survived by his wife Suzie Zamit, two children and two grandchildren.

Among those paying tribute was The Waterboys founder Mike Scott, who said on X: “Travel on well my old friend. You are one of the finest musicians I’ve ever known.”

Chesney Hawkes posted: "We lost one of the all time greats today. Karl Wallinger was a beautiful soul and a genius songwriter. Rest in peace old friend, I hope you find the rainbow...Now stop what you're doing and go listen to #Worldparty."

Curt Smith from pop band Tears For Fears said on X: “Very sad news, I was a big fan of Karl’s.”

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Wallinger also contributed to late Irish star Sinead O’Connor’s debut album The Lion And The Cobra, and they continued to work together for several years.

During his career, Wallinger also served as the musical director for the 1994 Ben Stiller-directed film Reality Bites, starring Ethan Hawke and Winona Ryder, as well as contributing to the Clueless soundtrack producing All The Young Dudes written by David Bowie a year later.

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