The Waterboys - Room To Roam

By Rachael Smith, London
This song represents, for me, a time of indecision and hope for the future.  It was released from the album ‘Room To Roam’ by The Waterboys in 1990, at a time when I was about to leave university for the big wide world.

I remember clearly the feeling of complete confusion about what I wanted to do and be and eventually become.  I was immature and naive and and completely lacking in life experience.  My friend Charlotte and I started to panic about what we would do and where we would find ourselves the following year – a time of soul searching and self doubt yet fearful excitement for the future.

During the 1980s I had been attracted to folk and gothic rock bands such as, in particular, All About Eve and The Waterboys.  And so it was, in 1990 that my dear friend Charlotte and I found solace in the ballad ‘In Search of a Rose’ with it’s opening lyric – ‘Where will I wander I wonder, nobody knows, but wherever I’m a goin’ I’ll go in search of a rose…’

We both did TEFL courses and went off on our travels to different parts of the world – and this album became the soundtrack to my wandering – with a battered cassette in my backpack and my Sony Walkman to accompany me!

When I listen to it now I can conjure up feelings of freedom and hope and positivity for what is ahead of me. The song became a foundation for my love of folk music and still inspires me into action and revives a sense of excitement for what lies around the corner.

Rachael is a teacher in South East London.

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