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Hothouse Flowers

Throughout the 80s, the members of the Irish band Hothouse Flowers made their living busking on the streets of Dublin (Liam O’Maonlai and Fiachna O’Braonain performed on the streets as The Incomparable Benzini Brothers).

But an appearance on Irish television in 1986 changed their fortunes: one of the people watching the broadcast was U2 vocalist Bono, and the singer immediately telephoned the band to offer his assistance.

The outcome of Bono’s offer was a single – Love Don’t Work This Way – released on U2’s own Mother Records, which cemented the band’s popularity in Ireland. Soon major label A&R executives were vigorously pursuing the group, who ultimately signed with Polygram’s London label.

Their luck continued with a video guest spot on the widely-viewed Eurovision Song Contest with their single Don’t Go, which helped push their debut album, People, to #2 on the UK charts in June 1988.

During a stay in Los Angeles, some of the band did session work on the first Indigo Girls album, before returning to Dublin to complete their follow-up album, Home (1990).

Liam O’Maonlai
Vocals, keyboards
Fiachna O’Braonain
Leo Barnes
Peter O’Toole
Jerry Fehily