Bill Culp is a Canadian singer-songwriter, musician and entertainer who performs approximately 200 shows per year and includes Canada, the USA, Europe and Australia amongst his musical travels. As a busy professional, Bill works as a solo artist, band leader and sideman, enjoying considerable success in each of these pursuits.
As a solo artist, Bill Culp first rose to prominence with the 2005 release of "Roots'n'Roll" on Bullseye Records of Canada. With a solid combination of catchy songwriting coupled with excellent musicianship, the disc was critically praised and peaked at # 11 on the Freeform American Roots chart in Texas, while the lead single "Riverside" (featuring Garth Hudson from “The Band” on keyboards) enjoyed three consecutive months on the Canadian Hot 100 Country Radio chart. In total, the disc was radio play listed in twelve countries around the world including France, Belgium, Scotland, Australia, The Netherlands, The UK, Ireland, Germany, Italy, New Zealand, The USA and Canada. The disc's impressive mixture of Rock & Roll, Pop and Country was distributed in retail stores across North America via Fusion 3 in Canada, Burnside in the USA, and across Europe via Dusty Records (Sweden).
Stylistically, when listening to Bill Culp’s music you'll get a sense of The Band, early Elvis Costello, The Mavericks, The Stray Cats, Carl Perkins and on to The Del-Lords to go a bit more obscure. A wide array of references for sure, but there is a common thread of rock 'n roll fundamentalism. While he clearly pays homage to the pioneering genres of contemporary music, Culp’s music maintains a refreshing air or originality.
What is really striking with each listen is the strength of Culp's vocal performance, particularly on tracks like “Riverside” and “Your Sins Will Always Find You”. There's an appropriate rough edge from someone who is a veteran live performer, but it is a crisp and resonant roughness.
As a musician, Bill Culp has performed on-stage and/or in the studio with an interesting array of notable names including Kimberly Rew (Katrina and the Waves, writer of the classic tune “Walking on Sunshine”), Gene Taylor (The Blasters), Garth Hudson (The Band, Inductee of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland), Cleave Anderson (Blue Rodeo), Gord Lewis and Frankie Venom (Teenage Head), Bill Priddle (Treble Charger), Canadian punk legends The Problem Children, Dave Rave (The Shakers), Blues legends and multiple Juno winners Jack deKeyzer and Jim Byrnes, CCMA winners Sean Hogan, Keith Glass and Joan Besen (Prairie Oyster), 4-time Juno nominees Chris Whitely and Marie Bottrell, Kevin Kane (Grapes of Wrath), Simon Kendall (Doug and the Slugs), Jack Syperek (The Trews) , Ray Farrugia (Junkhouse), Astrid Young, Steven Drake (The Odds) amongst a long and growing list.
Bill’s musical talent and performing skills have also earned him a starring role in "Good Rockin' Tonight: The Sun Records Story", the official, international touring show of the legendary Memphis-based record label that launched the careers of Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis and Roy Orbison. In the show, Bill portrays Carl Perkins "the King of Rockabilly" and the author of the classic tune "Blue Suede Shoes".
Is it possible to be a "throwback" and an "original" at the same time? In the case of this unique Canadian, the answer is yes.