H2O (Scottish band)

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Origin Glasgow, Scotland
Genres New wave, synthpop
Years active 1978–1987
Labels RCA
Past members Ian Donaldson
Kenny Dorman
Alan McGhee
David Wells
Frank O'Hare
George Sinclair
Colin Ferguson
Ross Alcock
John Harton
Pete Kean
David Edgar
Ali McLeod
Colin Gavigan

H2O were a Scottish synthpop band known for their hit singles "I Dream to Sleep" and "Blue Diamond".


They were formed in Glasgow in 1978 by lead singer Ian Donaldson (who used to be part of punk band Skroo), Alan McGhee (Bass Player - who ultimately managed Oasis in the 90s - but, eventually replaced by Colin Ferguson), Kenny Dorman (drums - who, latterly, introduced Ross Alcock, both of them from Largs in Ayrshire) on keyboards, David Wells guitar, and Colin Gavigan (Saxophone) who all participated in writing the band's songs songwriting. The band's first independent single "Hollywood Dream" was released in 1981 on their own independent label Spock Records. Radio play (initially via Kenny Hislop, drummer with Slik) & BBC Scotland's Street Buzz helped raise their profile.

In 1982, with the addition of new guitarist Pete Kean, the band signed to RCA Records. Their biggest success (as they opened up for Kajagoogoo on their UK tour) was "I Dream to Sleep" which reached number 17[1] on the UK Singles Chart in June 1983. The follow-up single "Just Outside of Heaven" reached number 38 later the same year.[2] The following year, they released their only album Faith, but further success eluded them. In 1985, as a result, the band split soon after.

Despite the split, Donaldson and Alcock continued to write and demo new songs, attempting to get a new record deal. In early 1986, with the help of John O'Reilly who managed The Bluebells, they reformed once more, but this time with former Skroo guitarist Frank O’Hare, drummer David Edgar and bassist George Sinclair. They signed to Legend Records, a fledgling record company which offered the best chance of keeping H2O a priority band. At this point they split with John O'Reilly due to professional differences.

The band released the single "Blue Diamond" which just failed to reach the Top 40 in 1987, despite a lot of airplay from major radio stations. Frank O’Hare left the band in late 1987 and was replaced by former Hipsway guitarist Ali McLeod, and the single "Sun Ain't Gonna Shine Anymore" was released at the end of that year. Yet, it was less successful than the previous single. Following the closure of Legend Records, the band split once again.

After Blue Diamond guitarist Frank O'Hare left the band due to creative differences and family commitments, he maintained his place within the rock world, performing occasionally with his band 'Carnaby Street'. Along side best friends George Sinclair on backing vocals and bass guitar, and Des on the drums. Recently Frank O'Hare has been focusing on his solo career and is planning to release his album 'The Boy With The Golden Dream', set to release in May 2016.

Since then, they still occasionally reunited for a few local gigs, notably in 1993 for Radio Clyde's 'Cash For Kids', in 1994 for the opening gig for the newly converted venue The Renfrew Ferry, and in King Tutts in June 2003 for '20 Years of Dream To Sleep'.

Donaldson (no relation to Ian Stuart Donaldson) had a minor solo career in Scotland and is currently in the Scottish group Fourgoodmen, alongside Derek Forbes, Michael MacNeil and Bruce Watson.



  • 1983 - Faith
  • 1987 - Blue Diamond


  • 1982 - "Hollywood Dream"
  • 1983 - "All That Glitters (Rusts In Time)"
  • 1983 - "Just Outside Of Heaven"
  • 1983 - "I Dream To Sleep"
  • 1984 - "Who'll Stop The Rain"
  • 1984 - "You Take My Breath Away"
  • 1987 - "Blue Diamond"
  • 1987 - "Sun Ain't Gonna Shine Anymore"


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