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When in Rome (band)

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When in Rome
Origin Manchester, England
Genres Synth-pop,[1]
new wave[2]
Years active 1987–1990, 2006–present
Labels Virgin, 10, Spectra Records
Associated acts Beau Leisure
Members When in Rome II
Michael Floreale
John Ceravolo
Chris Willett
When in Rome UK
Clive Farrington
Andrew Mann
Rob Juarez
Past members Andy O'Connell

When in Rome are an English synth-pop/new wave group, which originally consisted of vocalists Clive Farrington and Andrew Mann, and keyboardist Michael Floreale. They are best known for their 1988 single "The Promise", which was their only Top 40 hit on the Billboard Hot 100 in the U.S. Due to ongoing legal issues, there are currently two incarnations of the band.[1][3][4]



Michael Floreale and Andy O'Connell were recruited by Clive Farrington to replace departed members of his Manchester-based group Beau Leisure.[5][6] Floreale and Farrington began to write songs together. Later, Farrington and Floreale saw Andrew Mann, a beat poet, and had him join their performances.[6] O'Connell left the group; the remaining trio recorded some demos – sometimes including Mann's friend Corinne Drewery of Swing Out Sister – while seeking a recording deal.[5][6] Farrington and Floreale came up with the band name after using the famous proverb to note the cultural differences between Manchester and London.[3] The band was signed to Elektra Records for a month before the label closed its London office, forcing the band to leave due to the time difference with the U.S.[5]

Debut album

The band was signed to Virgin UK subsidiary 10 Records, and their self-titled debut album was released on 3 May 1988. Producers Ben Rogan (who had worked with Sade) and Richard James Burgess took special interest in the trio's song "The Promise", issued first as a 12" dance disc. When the song became popular, hitting the top of Billboard's Dance Club Play chart, Virgin ordered an album. A remixed version of "The Promise" was the album's first single. It was an instant success, barely missing the Top Ten in the United States, peaking at No. 11.[7] Months later, the trio reached Billboard's pop chart's lower reaches for the last time with "Heaven Knows" (No. 95, 1990).[7] Additional singles did little on the charts, and the group ultimately faded away.

Breakup, reformation, and legal issues

In 1990, Floreale was fired by Farrington and Mann over creative differences and When in Rome disbanded shortly after Virgin Records dropped them in 1993.[1][5] Floreale moved to the United States, and now lives in Dallas, Texas, where he composes music for television and film.[8] Tensions arose between the members again in 2003, when "The Promise" was used in the 2004 film Napoleon Dynamite and Floreale made sole claim to the song, despite the trio receiving equal royalties.[1][5]

Floreale reformed the band in 2006 with vocalist and guitarist John Ceravolo under the name "When in Rome II".[6][9] Since then, the band has toured the United States and South America with various other 1980s groups.[6][10] Farrington and Mann reformed in 2009, under the name "When in Rome UK".[11] Floreale, however, had trademarked the name "When in Rome" in 2010,[4][1][9][3] which was unsuccessfully challenged by Farrington and Mann.[1][9] According to a Pollstar article in May 2011, the US trademark has been acknowledged: "In order to comply with the legal claim, the UK members, are billed as "Clive Farrington and Andrew Mann formerly of When In Rome" for US gigs.[4] In addition, Floreale filed an infringement claim against Rob Juarez, an associate of Farrington and Mann who attempted to trademark his tribute band name "When in Rome Revisited".[4]

On 10 May 2016, Farrington, with Pat Flanagan, published his autobiography Confessions of a One Hit Wonder: "The Promise" ... And The Aftermath.[3]


Original line-up (1987–1990)

  • Clive Farrington – Vocals
  • Andrew Mann – Vocals
  • Michael Floreale – Keyboards

When in Rome II (2006–present)

  • Michael Floreale – Keyboards
  • John Ceravolo – Vocals, guitar
  • Chris Willett – Drums

When in Rome UK (2009–present)

  • Clive Farrington – Vocals
  • Andrew Mann – Vocals
  • Rob Juarez – Drums


Studio albums

Title Details Peak chart positions
When in Rome 42 84
When in Rome II[14]
"—" denotes releases that did not chart


Year Single Peak chart positions Album

1988 "The Promise" 58 11 1 When in Rome
1989 "Heaven Knows" 95 14
1990 "Sight of Your Tears" 40
"—" denotes releases that did not chart

See also


  1. ^ a b c d e f Valcourt, Keith (13 March 2016). "When in Rome's Clive Farrington 'fires back'". The Washington Times. Retrieved 13 August 2017. 
  2. ^ Hage, Erik. "When in Rome – Artist Biography". AllMusic. All Media Network. Retrieved 27 April 2016. 
  3. ^ a b c d Gaydos, Kristen (19 June 2012). "Singer Clive Farrington shares humble beginnings of When in Rome UK". The Citizens' Voice. Retrieved 14 August 2017. 
  4. ^ a b c d Amendola, Tina (27 May 2011). "When in Rome Name Dispute". Pollstar. Retrieved 14 August 2017. 
  5. ^ a b c d e "Interview – Clive Farrington of When in Rome UK". Cryptic Rock. 26 May 2017. Retrieved 19 August 2017. 
  6. ^ a b c d e "Back to the 80s: Interview with Michael Floreale & Clive Farrington of When in Rome". Kickin' it Old School. 10 February 2011. 
  7. ^ a b c d Artist Chart History, When in Rome
  8. ^ L.A.S.Y.S. Inc. Artist Summary: Jayden Frost. Frost's album Blue was produced by Floreale.
  9. ^ a b c Valcourt, Keith (10 February 2016). "When in Rome II: 'Keeping the Promise'". The Washington Times. Retrieved 13 August 2017. 
  10. ^ Jacquelyn Carberry (21 September 2007). "Musical memories: It's time for the 1980s to get the nostalgia treatment with the Lost '80s Live tour". Honolulu Star Bulletin. Retrieved 11 April 2009. 
  11. ^ Manchester Direct Music Archive: When in Rome (submitted by Clive Farrington)
  12. ^ Steffen Hung. "When in Rome – When in Rome". Retrieved 8 December 2012. 
  13. ^ When in Rome. "When in Rome – Awards". AllMusic. Retrieved 8 December 2012. 
  14. ^ "When in Rome II album releases through Spectra Music Group". Lightfinder. 11 August 2015. Retrieved 13 August 2017. 
  15. ^ Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. ISBN 1-904994-10-5. 

External links