Bill R. Bell
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The Robert Burns poem, “A Red Red Rose” is a component of a larger project titled, “Requiem for Robert Burns,” by Bill Bell. The “Requiem for Robert Burns” is a compilation of compositions using Robert Burns poetry as text.  In Bill’s words, “Many of Robert Burns’ poems lend themselves to musical interpretations and ‘A Red Red Rose’ has been used as the text for several melodies through the centuries. This is my melody set to the beautiful, lyrical words of Robert Burns.”

Bill R. Bell Bill Bell's CD, “The Vicar's Son”, delves into traditional and contemporary Irish, Scottish and American fiddle music, but that's only a small slice of Bill's musical interests. His musical resume includes work with iconic underground pop stars, film scores, music for dance, and non-traditional electronic and microtonal music.

Bill’s early musical influences were church hymns and Country/Western music. These influences are attributed to his father, a Southern Baptist minister and accomplished Western songwriter and singer. Bill was also introduced to classical music and started lessons on the violin at age 12. He was soon drawn into the pop influences of the British invasion and the Beatles. Bill majored in choral composition in the 1970s and his later interests found him concentrating on electronic music, focusing on “Musique Concrete”.
“I spent years with razor blades and magnetic reel to reel tape,” he recounts. One result was “The Sirens of Galilee” a four years-in-the-making composition of found, recorded and manipulated sounds. His influences at the time were Karlheinz Stockhausen, Morton Subotnick, and Paul Hindemith. Living in Los Angeles afforded Bell the opportunity to meet other pioneer electronic musicians and work with some of their earliest synthesizer modules, among them; Bob Moog, Tom Oberheim, Serge Teherepnin and Don Buchla. Electronic music and its frontier possibilities led him further into a period of experimentation with microtonal, non-twelve tone composing systems. This came in handy when ten years later he met and worked with kitch icons, The Del Rubio Triplets.
“While living in Long Beach I met the amazing Del Rubio Triplets at a restaurant/lounge on Pacific Coast Highway. At this time they were playing small venues and rest homes. It was the beginning of a long friendship and collaboration as I brought them into the pop world as an opening act for the Fibonaccis at the Masonic Temple in Long Beach in 1988, followed by numerous television appearances, including the Arsenio Hall Show, Pee Wee’s Playhouse and the David Letterman Show. We recorded the album, “Three Gals, Three Guitars,” and their career was launched into the Hollywood underground. After the success of their first LP I produced “Whip It” and “Jingle Belles,” both CD releases in 1991.”
During this same time period Bill studied film composition with Earl Hagen and Jerry Goldsmith.
“I assembled a recording studio in Long Beach and recorded projects with some early Southern California punk bands including, the Suburban Lawns, Su Tissue, Rhino 39,  the Fibonaccis, Electric Sheep, Non Credo and Giant Ant Farm".

In 1992, Bill contributed tracks to the film score for “Kafka,” with Jeremy Irons, and composed and produced the haunting and eclectic “Frightened by Nightingales” CD in 1993, with Josey (Josie) Cotton. His later work with Josie Cotton resulted in the co-production of another Cotton CD, the “Invasion of the B-Girls.”

As a matter of clarification Bill often uses his middle name ‘Rhea’ instead of ‘Bell’ and much of his 1990s music was credited as Bill Rhea. After the completion of “Frightened by Nightingales” Bill began recording orchestral and mandolin tracks on an international music project with the Algerian Rai singer, Rimitti. These recordings were produced by Jean Benoit Vauxelaire in Paris, France and Geza X in Hollywood, California. Other musicians contributing to the two CDs were Robert Fripp, Flea, East Bay Ray, and the Fowler Brothers.

Since the early 2000's Bill has concentrated on American and Celtic fiddle music, having produced two CD‘s. “Under the Dome” (2003), is a compilation of Civil War music and, “The Vicar’s Son,” (2007) is a collection of traditional and original Scottish, Irish and Texas fiddle music. It includes folk tunes Bill has picked up on his travels in the British Isles as well as his own inspired tunes. “The result is warm, inviting folk music within a historical context with Bill's contemporary twist...as you can hear in the title track. This is friendly, unaffected music by an equally friendly and unaffected artist, with just enough mystery to provide an edge. Music that is presented with warmth and just a touch of slyness.” (Dennis White, dadastic!sounds!.) Bill is currently a member of "Highland Strings," a Southern California Celtic string band, and "Moonsville Collective," a Southern California alternative American roots band.

Email Bill at billrbell@earthlink.net

Write Bill at: P.O. Box 701, Cabazon, CA 92230

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