The Mighty Wah! were formed in 1979 by lead singer Pete Wylie.
As the groups principal songwriter, Pete Wylie gained critical acclamation with initial singles Seven Minutes to Midnight and Better Scream. The former was single of the week in Melody Maker, Sounds and the NME in 1980 but the song failed to make an impact on the UK singles chart.
The album Nah = Poo! – The Art of the Bluff, released by Warner in 1981 managed to hit #33 in the UK album chart and also attracted positive critical attention. Unfortunately subsequent singles Somesay and Forget the Down did not manage to break into the UK singles chart.
The Story of the Blues
1982 brought what would be the bands biggest single, The Story of the Blues, reaching #3 in the UK singles chart. The song would also be chosen by the late John Peel as his song of the year for 1982.
1982 also brought a new album release from the band called The Maverick Years 1980-81the album comprised bootleg copies of old songs combined with some new material, the album was released with a nod to the Hallmark of Quality bootlegs of the early 1970’s.
The album was released on Wylie’s own label Wonderful World of Wah! but it made no headway in commercial sales terms and after the bands next single Hope (I Wish You’d Believe Me) charted at a disappointing #37 the group were subsequently dropped by Warner Music Group.
In 1984 Wylie’s composition Come Back made the top twenty in the UK singles chart and for the second time in two years a Mighty Wah! song was appointed John Peel’s single of the year.
Beggars Banquet Records
An album was also released in 1984 as the band had recovered from being dropped by Warner and signed a deal with the independent label Beggars Banquet Records.
The band released A Word to the Wise Guy on 1 June 1984 but despite praise from various critical quarters the album sold in volumes that were less than expected.
The song charted at #28 in the UK album charts but this performance was not enough for Beggars Banquet. The label dropped the band believing that their faith had not been repaid and as a result they were left searching for a new record deal.
Unfortunately this would be the last original record that the band would make together with Pete Wylie, the bands creator and creative force, disbanding the group and pressing ahead with a solo career.
The Mighty Wah! returned in 2000 with a compilation album called The Handy Wah! Whole and Wylie has continued to tour the songs that made The Mighty Wah! one of the most important bands in Liverpool music history.