Pat McManus Band
Irish Power Trio led by former Mama's Boys and Celtus guitarist/violinist,singer and songwriter Pat McManus blew away some cobwebs away with a rocking All Saints Day performance at South Beach Sessions in 2018 and the first thing we did after that night was confirm his main stage slot a WinterStorm 2019. Be prepared to be blown apart!
Patrick Frances McManus was one of 6 children born into an incredibly talented musical family in Derrylin, Co.Fermangh, N.Ireland. Pat’s father, John, and his mother Valerie were highly accomplished Traditional Irish music players, so it wasn’t long before Pat and his two brothers, John and Tommy, were picking up all the instruments lying around the house and learning to play. By the age of 7, Pat had already performed on live T.V. and by 14 he was All-Ireland Fiddle Champion. Aged 20, Pat somehow stumbled across a band called Horslips. As Horslips were a Celtic rock band, the 3 brothers could relate to their music and quickly became big fans and later attended so many gigs that they formed a friendship with the guys in the band. The brothers soon swapped their Fiddles, Uilleann Pipes and Bodhrans for electric instruments and formed their first band called - Pulse, with Pat on Guitar, John on Bass & Vocals and Tommy (who was only 12 at the time) on drums. During an interview with Radio Luxembourg , Dj – Tony Prince, who remarked how young they all were, jokingly called them Mamas Boys - the boys changed their name. It was just meant to be an ‘of the cuff’ remark but the name stuck and soon the 3 brothers were officially known as Mamas Boys.
So quickly did they begin to win over their live audiences that soon they were invited to support almost every rock band that came to Belfast or Dublin . By this time, the brothers had released their first self financed album called “The Official Bootleg”. It was really just a demo that had been pressed onto vinyl and sold at their gigs. The first pressing of only 1000 (which had 10 tracks) sold so quickly that it had to be repressed time and time again (this time however with only 8 tracks). The album got the band noticed in England and in 1981 Mamas Boys were invited to tour the U.K. with Hawkwind. In 1982 the band released their second self financed album “Plug It In” which gained great reviews and spurned the hit single “Needle in The Groove”. Record labels were by now fighting over the band and this saw “Plug it in” repackaged and re-released in the U.K. by Ultranoise and by Virgin in France . Apart from headlining their own shows the band toured with Wishbone Ash and in 1983 they released their third album Turn it Up. By now the band were so popular that Phil Lynott personally asked them if they would be his support band on Thin Lizzys’ farewell tour which also included a slot at Reading Rock.
This is where they were spotted by Jive Records who signed the band on a world wide deal (except France where they were still signed to Virgin). Mamas Boys first release for Jive was the self titled “Mamas Boys” album.This record was basically just the best bits of the last two records plus two new tracks, an instrumental – “The Professor” (Pat’s nick name) and “Mama Were All Crazee Now” a cover of the old Slade song. A video was made to accompany this track and it gained Mamas Boys massive airplay in America with record stations playing all three versions of the track (Quiet Riot had also released the song at the same time) and asking the public to vote on which version was the best with Mamas Boys coming out on top, the majority of times. This saw the band getting some prestigious tour slots, going out in America with Ratt and Rush.
It was whilst signed to Jive that Pat first began to work as a session man for other artists which included a very wide range of acts such as John Parr, Tricky and Samantha Fox. (Pat is responsible for the guitar work on her hit single ‘Touch Me’ and she also covered a Mamas Boys song ‘Spirit Of America.’) In 1985 their 5 th album “Power And Passion” was released and after touring Europe in April and May they again headed to the States to tour with Bon Jovi and Ratt before briefly flying back to England to play the Knebworth festival with Deep Purple in front of 100,000 people. The tour ended up in Europe with Gary Moore and then onto Ireland by themselves in December of that year.
Pat's pedigree is unquestionable but what will get to you most is the stage presence and the sheer brilliance of his guitar work. Rory Gallagher influence and in some ways he's the spirit of Torme too. Can't wait to see him on the big stage.