Prior to Stealers Wheel, Gerry Rafferty had played in a Clydesdale folk duo called The Humblebums in the late 60s with superstar-comedian-to-be Billy Connolly. Billy would introduce Rafferty as “this wee guy fae Paisley that writes magic songs”.
Joining up with Joe Egan, he formed Stealers Wheel who enjoyed their first hit with Stuck In The Middle With You in May 1973.
After a scrappy self-titled debut album made as a quintet, the album Ferguslie Park (named after a notorious district of Paisley in Scotland) saw Stealers Wheel reduced to the songwriting core of Joe Egan and Gerry Rafferty, a move that heightened the focus on their sublime close harmonies – favourably compared to Simon & Garfunkel or CSN.
Constant personnel changes and a series of legal wranglings stifled any more success for Stealers Wheel, and Rafferty and Egan ended their partnership in 1975.
Destined to be remembered – if at all – for the cameo appearance of Stuck In The Middle With You in Quentin Tarantino’s Reservoir Dogs (1992), Stealers Wheel crafted many other tunes worthy of patronage by ‘K-Billy’s Super Sounds of the 70s’.