Katrina and the Waves
Katrina and the Waves

Katrina and the Waves

About Katrina and the Waves

New Wave rockers Katrina and The Waves brightened up the world with their 1985 feel-good single “Walking on Sunshine,” an international hit that reached the Top 10 in the US, UK, Canada, and Australia.

• The group has its roots in Mama’s Cookin’, a cover band formed in England in the late 1970s. The lineup featured Vince de la Cruz as primary vocalist and Katrina Leskanich on keyboards and vocals. Both were “military brats”—children of American servicemen.
• By the early ’80s, the lineup had come to include guitarist and singer Kimberly Rew and drummer Alex Cooper, who’d played together in a mid-’70s band called The Waves.
• Leskanich became the lead singer, and the group renamed itself The Waves. (They became Katrina and The Waves after releasing their 1983 debut album, Shock Horror.)
• The band began releasing singles in 1982, though only one, 1984’s “Que Te Quiero,” slipped into the upper reaches of the UK singles chart.
• “Walking on Sunshine” originally appeared in a different form on the band’s 1983 album of the same title, which was released only in Canada. Katrina and The Waves recorded the definitive version for their self-titled third album in 1985.
• Katrina and The Waves released six albums after their self-titled breakthrough, though only one of them, 1986’s Waves, made it onto the UK charts, peaking at No. 70.
• In 1997, the band won the Eurovision Song Contest with “Love Shine a Light,” the lead single from their album that year, Walk on Water. “Love Shine a Light” was a Top 10 hit across Europe, reaching No. 3 in the UK.
Walk on Water was the band’s final album, and Katrina and The Waves dissolved after Leskanich left the band in 1998.

  • ORIGIN
    Cambridge, England
  • FORMED
    1981

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