Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billy to play Celtic Connections set

This article is from 2012.

Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billy to play Celtic Connections set

Some facts you may not know about Will Oldham's alterego

1. This will be first Scottish performance in over five years
The music of Will Oldham (aka Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billy) has haunted independent music for over two decades now, through various monikers (Palace Music, Palace Brothers, Palace Songs to name a few) and his sound still strikes that emotional funny bone which straddles joy, filth and abject sadness. The Kentuckian singer-songwriter is returning as part of the Celtic Connections festival, and it’ll be his first visit to Glasgow since his tour of Scotland and Ireland with Harem Scarem back in 2006.

2. Each live set is always delightfully oddball
His shifting live arrangements mean both backing arrangements and vocals can be free form, so don’t expect Palace Brothers classics or even cuts from his seminal I See a Darkness album to sound like they’re recorded artefacts. With that said, he might play them note for note. You can never really tell.

3. He has plenty to sing about
Since his last visit upon touring with the The Letting Go LP, his releases over the past few years have been coming in thick and fast – and to a lot of critical praise. Choice tracks from with his collaborations with The Phantom Family Halo, The Cairo Gang and his newest LP Wolfroy Goes to Town will sound utterly regal in performance.

4. He has a great moustache
Will is the original tached-up weirdo musician, and occasional arthouse cinema actor. Long before the recent rise in top lip foliage among the masses; his was (and still is) the mouser of Appalachian misery rock.

5. He wrote one of the saddest songs of the 90s
‘Come In’ by the Palace Brothers is a bona fide heart wrencher [listen below].

Old Fruitmarket, Glasgow, Sun 29 Jan, as part of Celtic Connections.

Palace Brothers - Come In (1993)

Bonnie Prince Billy

Folk-rock from Louisville-based singer-songwriter William Oldham.

Union Chapel, London N1

Thu 27 Jul

Sold out / 020 7226 1686

Bonnie 'Prince' Billy and Susanna Wallumrod

One of the quietly brilliant chroniclers of the American folk tradition, Will Oldham has a formidable catalogue of close to 20 years' worth of melancholic material to draw on for this show. Part of Celtic Connections.

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