Bill Culp: A Roots'N'Roll Biography
Bill Culp is a critically acclaimed Canadian solo artist that mixes vocal harmonies, roots music and high-energy into a style often compared to Nick Lowe, Dave Edmunds, The Band, The Long Ryders, Carl Perkins and Dave Alvin. With an extensive live touring schedule that includes the CCMA awards weekend in Calgary, Canada, the IPO Festivals in Chicago, Los Angeles, Nashville, and Liverpool UK, Culp has secured considerable radio airplay in 12 countries around the world, including three months on the prestigious FAR American Roots chart, and a Top 100 Canadian country radio hit.
With Canadian award nominations at both the Toronto Independent Music Awards and the Hamilton Music Awards (Best Roots Album), numerous positive reviews from around the globe, a North American record deal with Bullseye Records, Culp’s solo success is a reflection of his extensive and diverse musical background.
Bill Culp was born in Dunnville, Ontario, Canada where there were only two kinds of music: country and what young people were listening to. The combination of rock and roll energy and rootsy honesty has been the signature of Culp’s 20 years on the Canadian roots and rock music scene.
Starting his career as a singing cowboy at age seven, Culp played his first bar gig at age 15. His songwriting found its first vehicle when he co-founded Canadian punk legends Problem Children, a group whose debut album reached the Top 10 on the National Campus Charts in the mid-1980’s. In addition to his early heroes, which included Jerry Lee Lewis, Elvis Presley and Carl Perkins, Culp gravitated to the lively Hamilton roots punk scene that included Teenage Head, Tom Wilson and the Florida Razors, The Shakers, and The Bopcats, but was also inspired by American groups of the era such as The Blasters and The Long Ryders.
Culp hit the road at age 18 and never looked back, playing in the Tennessee Rockets and Six Gun Justice. As a member of the Fabulous Diefenbakers, Culp performed as a sideman for the likes of Jack deKeyzer, Gene Taylor, Ken Whiteley, Chris Whiteley, Washboard Hank, Donnie Walsh aka "Mr. Downchild" and Mary deKeyzer. In addition, he has also portrayed the "King of Rockabilly" Carl Perkins, in the touring musical play "The Sun Records Story". Finally, Culp combined his extensive live performance experience along with his many musical friends to create his aptly-titled solo debut disc called "Roots’N’Roll".
On Roots’N’Roll, Culp has channeled the spirit of Memphis with a little help from some notable Canadian performers including the legendary Garth Hudson (The Band, member of The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame) on keyboards, Jack deKeyzer (Juno winner for Roots recording) on lead guitar, Chris Whiteley (four-time Juno nominee) on pedal steel, harmonica and trumpet, Mary deKeyzer (Canada’s “Queen of Country Blues”), Dave Rave (Teenage Head, The Shakers), and Bob McNiven (Stompin’ Tom Connors) on harmony vocals, Conrad Kipping (Melody Ranch) on fiddle and mandolin, Big Dave Tufford (Sue Medley, Melody Ranch) and Paul Kelly (Problem Children) on guitar, with Mark Matthews (The Skansters, The Liquidaires) on drums.
The songs include 14 solid tracks comprised of infectious originals and a few interesting nuggets written by Tom Wilson, Dave Alvin, Jack deKeyzer and Dave Rave.
Co-produced by Jim Zolis (best known for his work with Jane Siberry, the Nylons, the Northern Pikes, and Glass Tiger), the result is a truly soulful collection of tunes that renew the meaning of “roots”.