Depending on one’s interest, one is either amazed and entertained or bored to tears with Bill Kopp’s encyclopedic knowledge of the popular music of the last fifty years. A rock/pop music historian, he has amassed a collection of nearly way more than (aw, jeez…) 8,500 9,000 albums, nearly half of those on vinyl. Bill has written for the now-defunct Skope (where he ran things as Editor-in-Chief for two years), Billboard, Trouser Press, Ugly Things, WNC Magazine, Mountain Xpress, The Laurel of Asheville, Shindig! Magazine, 60sgaragebands.com and Jambase.org, among others.
Bill has interviewed and written features on artists including Chris Squire (Yes), The Psychedelic Furs, Bill Wyman, Todd Rundgren, The Flaming Lips, Ray Manzarek (Doors), R. Stevie Moore, Harry Shearer, Nick Lowe, Ozric Tentacles, Steve Hackett (Genesis), Tommy James, John Wetton (UK, Asia, King Crimson), Felix Cavaliere (Rascals), Akron/Family, Paul Revere & the Raiders, The Moody Blues, Gary Wright, Greg Lake (Emerson, Lake & Palmer), Martin Newell (Cleaners From Venus), Bootsy Collins, Ann Wilson (Heart), Kim Wilson (Fabulous Thunderbirds), Ian Anderson (Jethro Tull), Henry Rollins, Yoko Ono, Van Dyke Parks, Richard Barone, Jason Falkner, Tony Levin, Mitch Ryder, Steve Cropper (Booker T & the MGs), Crowded House, Camper Van Beethoven, Project/Object, The Church, Jack Casady, Trey Gunn, Porcupine Tree, The Turtles, Howard Jones, Creedence Clearwater Revisited, The Fleshtones, KT Tunstall, Andy Partridge, Terry Adams (NRBQ), Carmine Appice, The Black Angels, Robyn Hitchcock, Roky Erickson, Gentle Giant, Richard Barone, Adrian Belew, The Polyphonic Spree, Zoé, Thrice, Pat Mastelotto, Steve Wynn, Fall Out Boy, Dungen, Richie Havens, Sean Lennon, Bigelf, Pete Yorn, The Residents, Los Straitjackets, Radio Birdman, Veruca Salt, Richard X Heyman, Tommy Keene, Black Mountain, Marshall Crenshaw, Bob Moog, The Veronicas, The New York Dolls, Johnny Winter and many others. He’s reported on the Americana Music Conference, Yep Roc 15, Hopscotch, Bonnaroo, Moogfest and Echo Project festivals, and written about consumer products including the Microsoft Zune, Rock Band: The Game and many others.
He’s currently working on a book proposal (music-related, of course). He lives in a century-old house in Asheville, NC with his vintage motorcycle and way, way, way too many synthesizers.
Every so often I’ll stumble across a story that is so note-perfect, so finely wrought, that my cynical side, the suspicious dimension of my nature is engaged. And since the arts are often home to some serious myth-making, when such stores concern musicians, I am doubly skeptical. But on the rarest of occasions, stories such as these are in fact true. The real deals do still exist: people with stories worthy of a Hollywood treatment are out there, waiting to be discovered.
Posted on January 27, 2014 at 9:00am — 3 Comments
The argument is often put forth – and not wholly without merit – that modern commercial country and western is an extension of rock music. The thinking goes that today’s c&w superstars craft songs that have much in common musically with “classic rock,” and that what they do to change it has more to do with lyrical subject matter and (real or affected) regionally accented vocals.
And while that may be true, those c&w acts aren’t exactly fishing in the deep end of the…Continue
Posted on January 15, 2014 at 6:00am — 5 Comments
Like many esteemed musicians before him – Declan MacManus springs immediately to mind – Morgan Geer (formerly of Asheville’s fondly-remembered The Unholy Trio) plys his musical trade using a nom de musc; in his case, it’s Drunken Prayer. The Portland/Asheville artist – who argues convincingly that he’s “not trying to be neo or alt or Americana but let out a howl informed by living life and soaking up American music from slave tunes to psychedelia to street parades” –…Continue
Posted on December 9, 2013 at 12:30pm
Perhaps it’s paradoxical to suggest that the best way to capture a rough and tumble, unvarnished musical performance is through use of high definition cameras, but that was exactly the approach taken on Pierce Edens and the Dirty Work‘s upcoming LIVE. “We got to make something like the live show that you can also take home when the lights go down,” says Edens. Two Asheville NC events in November – an advance screening and release party – celebrated the release of the new…Continue
Posted on December 9, 2013 at 12:30pm