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13 Nov 2016

Bill Nelson (Be Bo Deluxe) “Northern Dream” 1971 UK private Psych Folk Rock

Bill Nelson (Be Bo Deluxe)  “Northern Dream” 1971 UK rare Private Psych Folk Rock
review by psychedelic baby
Excellent guitarist Bill Nelson, was born in Wakefield and at early age playing guitar and organized a variety of bands. Northern Dream is the first solo Lp (1971) 
Holyground was a meeting place for Wakefield’s beat scene, and Nelson was invited to play on records released by the studio’s own label, also called Holyground. He played guitar on a track on the 1971 album, “A-Austr”, a titled culled from an encyclopaedia reference. He also performed on three songs on “Astral Navigations”, a similar LP assembled by the Holyground collective, together with Preston heavy rock band Thundermother. The albums were sold through the Record Bar, but their tiny pressing runs led to them fetching huge sums on the progressive rock market by the mid-1980’s…… 

The series of ongoing releases begins with the re-release of Bill’s classic album Northern Dream, recorded on rudimentary equipment at Holyground studios in Wakefield in 1971. One of the first truly independently produced albums to be released in Britain, the album featured wonderful compositions such as Everyone’s Hero, End of the Seasons, Love’s a Way and Smiles . Championed by John Peel, the album paved the way for Bill’s future career with his bands Be Bop Deluxe and Red Noise and for his highly regarded solo career……… 

In the hinterland between the tarnishing of glam and the birth of mewling and puking punk, there wasn’t a great deal of worth going on in Britain besides Dr Feelgood and Be Bop Deluxe. The failure of the latter band to ascend to enormously-deserved superstar status is a 70s mystery to rival the disappearance of Lord Lucan, but there is at least some consolation in the on-going respect accorded to founder Bill Nelson, who remains artistically valid a good 40 years after the original release of his debut album Northern Dream. 

Recorded on a two-track machine in Wakefield’s Holyground Studios in 1971 and pressed in an initial run of 300 copies, the album reveals Nelson to have already been an exceptionally handy guitarist, if not quite as startlingly fluent and imaginative as he would summarily become in Be Bop Deluxe. In songwriting terms, meanwhile, there’s little evidence of even a nascent Cocteau influence in lyrics which are, for the most, part simple and sincere. Essentially, a variety of archetypes are hymned – the slo-mo groove of Everyone’s Hero recalls Free, while the Pied Piper flute and nodding festival gait of Rejoice summons Traffic and Bloo Blooz displays a firm grasp of Peter Green phrasing. Inessential, but beguiling…….by Record Collector magazine….. 

Bill Nelson (born William Nelson, 18 December 1948, Wakefield, West Yorkshire, England) is an English guitarist, songwriter, painter and experimental musician. He currently lives in Selby. 
Nelson was educated at the Wakefield College of Art, where he developed an interest in the work of poet and filmmaker, Jean Cocteau. At this time he was also developing as a musician, drawing upon Duane Eddy as a primary guitar influence. 
His first recording was a brief contribution on the album A-Austr, with Chris Coombs, Brian Calvert and Mike Levon. Levon recorded and produced the album A-Austr: Musics from Holyground which appeared on Holyground in 1970. After that Nelson appeared in a much more substantial role with Lightyears Away on Astral Navigations released in 1971. One track from this also gave Nelson his first airplay by John Peel: “Yesterday”, written by Coombs, where Nelson’s lead guitars were recorded by Levon in an acid rock style, supporting Coombs’ stylophone riff. 
Nelson’s debut solo album Northern Dream drew more attention from Peel on his national BBC Radio 1 programme in the United Kingdom, and this eventually led to Nelson’s band Be-Bop Deluxe signing to EMI. All of the Nelson recordings made at Holyground were released in February 2001 on the CD, Electrotype. Shortly after this Be-Bop Deluxe were signed to EMI, releasing Axe Victim 
After the breakup of Be-Bop Deluxe, Nelson created Red Noise (releasing the Sound on Sound album), but eventually settled into a career as a solo musician, recording albums in the early electropop vein such as The Love That Whirls and Quit Dreaming and Get On the Beam. Many of these albums were released with bonus records featuring experimental ambient instrumentals. For a period between the late 1970s and early 1980s, Nelson self-produced on his Cocteau label a plethora of releases, consisting of solo synthesizer and keyboard instrumental pieces. Many were later released on the short-lived Enigma label. 
In mid 1980 Nelson released “Do You Dream In Colour?”, and after airplay on BBC Radio 1, the single reached #52 in the UK Singles Chart. 
He also contributed towards several tracks on David Sylvian’s Gone to Earth (1986). 
Nelson had bad luck with major labels in the 1980s. A deal with CBS Records went sour, leaving one album, Getting the Holy Ghost Across (U.S. title: On a Blue Wing). Nelson and his manager Mark Rye had formed the Cocteau Records label in 1981, and for many years this label handled the majority of Nelson’s output, which often included multiple albums per year. Among the more ambitious Cocteau releases were the four-record boxed set of experimental electronic music, Trial by Intimacy (The Book of Splendours), and the later ambient collection, Chance Encounters in the Garden of Lights, which contained music informed by Nelson’s Gnostic beliefs. In the late 1980s, Nelson signed to the U.S. label Enigma Records, and though they re-released his entire Cocteau catalogue, the label soon went out of business. 
As the 1980s ended, Nelson suffered a series of personal setbacks, including a divorce, tax problems, and an acrimonious dispute with his manager over his back catalogue rights. In the case of one album, the unreleased Simplex, his manager had been selling copies via mail order without Nelson’s authorisation; Nelson claims he never received any royalties from these sales. 
In the 1990s he released the 4-CD box set, Demonstrations of Affection, and he worked on some guitar-based instrumental projects such as the albums Crimsworth and Practically Wired, or How I Became Guitar Boy. Further large scale improvised offerings included My Secret Studio and Noise Candy. 
In 1996, Nelson’s troubles with his former manager were resolved in a lawsuit which enabled Nelson to recover much of his back catalogue. A fully authorized version of the Simplex album was released in 2001. 
In the late 1990s, Nelson created the Populuxe Records label, with a distribution arrangement with Robert Fripp’s Discipline Global Mobile, but the relationship with DGM has stagnated and Nelson’s last DGM release was Atom Shop in 1998. Subsequent releases have been on other imprints such as Toneswoon and Voiceprint as well as direct mail-order releases. 
2002 saw the release of Three White Roses and a Budd (CD Single, with Fila Brazillia and Harold Budd) on Twentythree Records. 
By 2006, Universal Music (UK) re-issued three Mercury albums on CD - Quit Dreaming and Get on the Beam, The Love that Whirls, and Chimera all have been remastered, and released with bonus tracks. The lone CBS album, Getting the Holy Ghost Across/On a Blue Wing, has also been issued on CD, with all the original tracks and extras on Nelson’s Sonoluxe imprint. 
An annual event known as ‘Nelsonica’ is held every year in Yorkshire, at which Nelson makes a rare public performance…..Mike Musiclover…… 

Leon Arthurs Bass 
Richard Brown Piano, Drums, Harmonium 
Gareth Eilledge Bass, Guitar (Bass) 
Bill Nelson Guitar (Acoustic), Bass, Flute, Guitar, Drums, Guitar (Bass), Recorder, Vocals, Bottleneck Guitar, Vocal Harmony 

Songs / Tracks Listing 

1. Photograph (A Beginning) (4:03) 
2. Everyone’s Hero (1:39) 
3. House of Sand (3:00) 
4. End of the Seasons (4:45) 
5. Rejoice (3:33) 
6. Love’s a Way (2:44) 
7. Northern Dreamer (2:34) 
8. Bloo Blooz (4:34) 
9. Sad Feelings (3:16) 
10. See It Through (4:31) 
11. Smiles (5:15) 
12. Chymepeace (An Ending) ( 0:25) 

johnkatsmc5, welcome music..