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Billy Bremner (musician)

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Title: Billy Bremner (musician)  
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Subject: Labour of Lust, Rockpile, Tracks on Wax 4, Seconds of Pleasure, Nick the Knife
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Billy Bremner (musician)

Billy Bremner
Billy Bremner in 1980
Background information
Birth name William Murray Bremner
Born 4 August 1946
Aberdeen, Aberdeenshire, Scotland
Genres Rock, rock and roll, rockabilly, country music
Occupation(s) Musician, songwriter
Instruments Guitar, vocals
Years active 1964–present
Associated acts Fatso, Rockpile, Dave Edmunds, Nick Lowe, The Pretenders, Carlene Carter, Shaking Stevens

William Murray "Billy" Bremner (born 4 August 1946, Aberdeen, Aberdeenshire, Scotland) is a guitarist best known for his work in the band Rockpile and on many of Nick Lowe and Dave Edmunds' albums. He has also played with The Pretenders, Shakin' Stevens, Carlene Carter and The Coal Porters, as well as issuing three solo albums.[1]


  • Career Overview 1
  • Album discography 2
    • Solo 2.1
    • As a member of Rockpile 2.2
    • As a sideman 2.3
  • References 3
  • External links 4

Career Overview

Bremner first became known playing with The Luvvers, who served as Lulu's backing band. However, by the time Bremner joined the group in 1966, they were on the wane; Bremner did not play on any of Lulu's recorded material, and joined just after the group recorded their only single without Lulu ("The House On The Hill"/"Most Unlovely") for Parlophone in 1966. The Luvvers disbanded in 1967.

In 1971 Bremner added some guitar work to March Hare, the first solo album from ex-Honeybus member Colin Hare. He then became a member of the Neil Innes band Fatso, which went on to record the soundtrack for the original Rutland Weekend Television series.

As "Bill Murray" he released two singles produced by Kris Ife; "Downtown hoedown"/"Rhyme and reason": (1977) Polydor 2058 881, and "Heart and the Stone"/"I Don't Wanna Be No Hero" (1978) State records 72.

Next, he joined Rockpile, who only released one album under their own name, but also served as the band for most of Nick Lowe's and Dave Edmunds' albums in the 1970s. In addition to his guitar playing, Bremner occasionally sang lead, as he did on "Heart" and "You Ain't Nothing But Fine" on the 1980 Rockpile album Seconds of Pleasure. He also wrote Edmunds' hit "Trouble Boys" (which Edmunds would let him sing live), but used an alias, Billy Murray, on the writing credits, so as not to be confused with the more famous Scottish footballer, of the same name.

After Rockpile split in 1981, Bremner released two solo singles on Stiff Records "Loud Music In Cars"/"The Price is Right" (BUY 125) and "Laughter Turns to Tears"/"Tired and Emotional" (BUY 143).[2] Bremner then played lead guitar on The Pretenders' 1982 hit single "Back On The Chain Gang"/"My City Was Gone" and later provided lead guitar for their 1990 album Packed!.

Bremner released his first solo album, Bash!, in 1984,[1] containing songs co-written with The Records' Will Birch, and covers of songs by Elvis Costello, and Chris Difford and Glenn Tilbrook of Squeeze. Bash! featured a rhythm section of Dave Kerr-Clemenson from Fast Buck on bass and Terry Williams from Rockpile on drums. Bremner played all the guitar parts and sang the harmonies with Kerr-Clemenson. Billy could be seen many times at the legendary Red Lion Brentford playing with Fast Buck.

After stints in Los Angeles, California (where he played in the bands of Pat McLaughlin and Rosie Flores) and Nashville, Tennessee Bremner moved to Sweden in the 1990s where he met The Refreshments,[1] producing and playing on their album It's Gotta Be Both Rock 'n' Roll. A second solo album, A Good Week's Work, followed in 1999 and a third No Ifs, Buts, Maybes in 2006, both recorded in Sweden. His most recent solo album, Rock Files, was issued in 2012.

Bremner, Sean Tyla and two Swedish musicians, are also members of Stockholm-based band Trouble Boys,[3] who released an album Bad Trouble in September 2012

Album discography


  • Bash! (1984)
  • A Good Week's Work (1998)
  • No Ifs, Buts, Maybes (2006)
  • Rock Files (2012)

As a member of Rockpile

As a sideman

With Dave Edmunds
With Nick Lowe
With The Pretenders
With Shakin' Stevens
With Carlene Carter
With The Coal Porters
  • Land of Hope and Crosby 1994
  • London 1995
  • Rebels Without Applause 1996
With Neil Innes
With Jim Lauderdale
  • Persimmons 1996
  • Other Sessions 2000
With Trouble Boys
  • Bad Trouble (2012) Ball and Chain Records
With other artists


  • Roadwork (Swedish Band)cd download album, Round Two: Guest guitarist/singer released 2013


  1. ^ a b c Huey, Steve. "Biography of Billy Bremner". Allmusic. Retrieved 9 January 2011. 
  2. ^ Stiff Records Catalogue Retrieved 3 April 2009
  3. ^ "Sean Tyla - Biography". Sean Tyla.Com. Retrieved 10 March 2014. 
  4. ^ "Credits for Billy Bremner". Allmusic. Retrieved 9 January 2011. 

External links

  • - Q&A session
  • Billy Bremner discography at Discogs
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