The Bills are an extraordinary quintet from the west coast of Canada, renowned for their instrumental virtuosity, lush vocal arrangements, exuberant live performances, evocative songwriting and refreshingly innovative interpretations of traditional tunes from around the globe. Hailed by The Glasgow Herald as “the biggest blast of fresh air to come out of Canada since The Band,” they have racked up a string of Canadian music awards and a devoted fan following that extends across North America and Europe.
The band features an all-star line-up of talent that includes Chris Frye (guitar, lead vocals), Marc Atkinson (mandolin, guitar, vocals), Adrian Dolan (fiddle, accordion, piano, vocals), Richard Moody (violin, viola, vocals) and Scott White (upright bass). All busy musicians, The Bills had been working on other musical projects until they recently reunited to record Yes Please, the follow-up to their Juno Award nominated album Let Em Run (released on Red House in April, 2005).
The Bills began as The Bill Hilly Band in 1996, when Canadian jazz and rock musicians Marc Atkinson (guitar) and Scott White (upright and electric bass) took up new acoustic instruments (mandolin and fiddle, respectively) and began exploring folk tunes from around the world. The two had already toured extensively throughout North America and Australia in various groups, playing such prestigious events as the Montreal Jazz Fest. A vocalist and guitarist raised on fiddle music, Chris Frye was a jazz guitar student of Marc’s. Chris and Marc quickly formed musical bonds, sharing a taste for a broad variety of musical styles. Chris’ powerful singing and deep knowledge of North American traditional tunes lent themselves to the music that Marc and Scott were creating, and they quickly welcomed him into their new band and released their first self-titled album. Featured prominently on CBC Radio, the band quickly gained momentum adding 17-year old prodigy Adrian Dolan (fiddle, accordion, piano) to their line-up. They went on to release their second album All Day Every Day, which earned them a Juno Award nomination and won them a Western Canada Music Award for “Outstanding Roots Release.” They were also honored as BC Touring Artists of the Year.
Shortening their name to The Bills, the band released their album Let Em Run in 2005, which was picked up by Grammy-winning US label Red House Records. The album earned them their second Juno Award nomination, and the video for “Let Em Run” was aired across Canada on CMT. Seasoned Winnipeg jazz and world music talent Richard Moody (violin, viola) joined the band not long after. Touring the US, the band became a favorite at bluegrass, folk and Americana festivals and quickly won over legions
Responding to fan demand, The Bills released Yes Please in 2013 on Red House Records. Featuring almost all originals, the album is a vibrant collection of instrumentals and songs that perfectly showcase why The Bills are known the world over as one of the most boldly innovative roots bands, always remaining true to the global acoustic traditions they revere.