I’ve been playing music for more than 40 years. First influenced by the country music I heard as a child, and then by the folk-rock of the Lovin’ Spoonful and the Byrds, and by the folk revival of the ’60’s, I began to attend the Philadelphia Folk Festival in 1969 where I was introduced to real traditional music. With all these influences (and some Beatles, Motown, blues, and jazz), I perform what I call “eclectic folk music”. I am mainly a singer, and sometimes I just sing, with no accompaniment. But when I first wanted to sing that option did not occur to me, so I taught myself to play the guitar, and then the mandolin, and then the concertina and the mountain dulcimer. I usually perform solo, but also play with others: sometimes with my wife and my children (now grown), and sometimes with Matteo Casini (who can do a lot of things I can’t do on the guitar), and sometimes with anyone who is willing to join me. More recently I have been a regular member of The Providence Wholebellies, a wild and eclectic band.
I do a lot of traditional music of the British Isles and North America, but I’ve also written a few songs, and do some songs that others have written. My main influences have been: Pete Seeger, Utah Phillips, Jerry Jeff Walker, Joni Mitchell, Phil Ochs, Tom Paxton, Frankie Armstrong, Louis Killen, John Roberts & Tony Barrand, and of course my namesake, Bill Monroe.
Here are some samples of my music:
“Providence” and “Riding Down the Coast” are my own songs. “By the Water’s Edge” is my most recent song.
The rest are traditional. Most are performed solo, but four of them feature Matteo Casini on guitar and vocals.