Waking the Witch (band)

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Waking the Witch
OriginLeeds, England
GenresFolk, rock
Years active2003 (2003)–2008 (2008)
LabelsParamijo, Witch
Past membersRachel Goodwin
Patsy Matheson
Jools Parker
Becky Mills
Michelle Plum

Waking the Witch were a Leeds-based band, formed in 2003. After playing at several major festivals and releasing three albums, they split up in 2008.


The band initially consisted of Rachel Goodwin, Patsy Matheson, Jools Parker, and Michelle Plum, with Becky Mills replacing Plum in 2005, all of whom also worked as solo artists, and they took their name from a song on the Kate Bush album Hounds of Love.[1][2][3] All acoustic guitarists and vocalists, the band cited jazz, rock, and folk influences, as well as pop acts such as Coldplay and Kate Bush.[2][4]

They received airplay from BBC disc jockeys such as Bob Harris, Janice Long, and Charlie Gillett, and recorded a sessions for Long's and Gillett's shows.[1][5]

They appeared at several major UK festivals including Glastonbury,[2] Trowbridge and Cambridge. They headlined the Holmfirth Festival of Folk in 2006.[2][6]

They released three albums — Like Everybody (2004), Hands and Bridges (2005), and Boys from the Abattoir (2007).[7][8][9] Boys from the Abbattoir featured guest contributions from former Big Country guitarist Bruce Watson and Claire "Fluff" Smith from The Incredible String Band.[8] A live DVD was released in 2007.

Waking the Witch split up in 2008 after a farewell tour.[10][11]

The four members subsequently returned to solo performances.[10][12]

They reunited without Parker for a one-off performance in February 2010 at a fundraiser for the DEC's Haiti earthquake appeal.[13]



  • Like Everybody (2004), Paramijo
  • Hands and Bridges (2005), Witch
  • Boys from the Abattoir (2007), Witch



  1. ^ a b "Preview: Waking The Witch, Fibbers, York May 29", York Press, 27 May 2005. Retrieved 28 March 2015
  2. ^ a b c d "Take four girls!", BBC, 28 April 2006. Retrieved 28 March 2015
  3. ^ "Folk legend Tom flies in", The Journal, 17 October 2003. Retrieved 28 March 2015
  4. ^ "My mummy's a pop star...", Yorkshire Post, 8 March 2005. Retrieved 28 March 2015
  5. ^ "Hauntingly harmonic", Halifax Courier, 4 May 2006. Retrieved 28 March 2015
  6. ^ "Waking Witches will be put to bed", The Star, 6 March 2008. Retrieved 28 March 2015
  7. ^ Coleman, Andy (2006) "Wake up and listen, we're on at the mac!", Birmingham Evening Mail, 13 January 2006
  8. ^ a b "Deborah Bonham Band set to rock Beinstock", Daily Record, 22 January 2008. Retrieved 28 March 2015
  9. ^ Seaman, Duncan (2007) "Witches cast a spell", Telegraph & Argus, 2 February 2007. Retrieved 28 March 2015
  10. ^ a b "Rachel Goodwin is back at Cellars", Scarborough News, 3 September 2008. Retrieved 28 March 2015
  11. ^ "Waking the Witch split up", Yorkshire Evening Post, 28 January 2008. Retrieved 28 March 2015
  12. ^ "Patsy Matheson Centenary Centre gig announced", IOM Today, 23 July 2009. Retrieved 28 March 2015
  13. ^ "Waking the Witch on that 'reunion'", Harrogate Advertiser, 4 February 2010. Retrieved 28 March 2015