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Billy Peterson, Bass

Performed or Recorded With:

Leo Kottke
Bob Dylan
Art Resnick
Mark Gaddis
Dick Pinney
Michael Johnson
Ben Sidran
Claudia Schmidt
Steve Miller
Neal Schon
Phil Upchurch
Larry Long
The CCM Jazz Ensemble
Bob Rockwell
Bill Carrothers
David Hazeltine
Ira Sullivan
Lee Konitz
Tony Hymas
David Aaron Thomas

Featured Artist:

Billy Peterson, Bass

In the mid 1970s he pop career of bassist Billy Peterson was fllourishing. In 1974 Billy met Leo Kottke, the great folk guitarist, and was the bassist on Kottke's three albums for Capitol Records and Chrysalis: Ice Water, Dreams and All that Stuff, and Chewing Pine. Billy was also the electric and upright bassist on Bob Dylan's legendary multi-platinum recording Blood On The Tracks for Columbia Records. The single 'Tangled up in Blue' topped the pop charts in 1975 and was ranked 49 on the Top 100 Rock and Roll Songs ever recorded in the December, 2000 issue of Rolling Stone magazine.

In 1976 Billy was asked to join the Gibson guitar staff. This association allowed him the opportunity to conduct clinics and perform with guitar legends BB King, Johnny Smith, Lenny Breau, Les Paul, and the late Howard Roberts. It was also during this decade when record producer and engineer David Rifkin (aka David Z, who produced Prince in the 80's) introduced Billy to keyboardist Ben Sidran (Steve Miller Band, Rolling Stones). That was the beginning of an inspiring musical partnership that has remained strong to this day.

The late seventies and early eighties were totally consumed with music from all angles. Billy released his solo album Threshold of Surrender in 1981 on Celebration Records. He continued to tour Europe with various artists and was also the in-house bassist for the Sound 80 recording studio in Minneapolis. During that time he recorded many albums plus national radio and television commercials. His performances ranged from solo bass to playing with a full symphony orchestra.

In 1986 Ben Sidran was hired to produce an album for Steve Miller on Capitol Records. Ben immediately hired Billy to play bass on the recording Born to be Blu and Steve Miller asked Billy to join the band as his bassist. Billy toured with the Steve Miller Band from 1987 to 2000 during the spring and summer months and played the bass on the Born to Be Blue (Capitol), Steve Miller Band Box Set (Capitol), and Wide River (Polydor) recordings. He also continued to tour Europe and Japan in the fall and winter months with Ben Sidran.

In 1990 Ben introduced Billy to the Go Jazz record label. Billy became a Go Jazz artist, staff producer and arranger. He worked on numerous recordings with Ben Sidran, pianist and vocalist Georgie Fame, and guitarist Phil Upchurch. Shortly after this time, The Artist formerly known as Prince asked Billy to create a string arrangement for the New Power Generation's dynamo maven, Rosie Gaines.

Billy has been called a chameleon and at home in any 'bag' of music weather it be jazz, rock, pop, R&B or country. You can catch Billy performing with various artists in different genres of music. He played with Carlos Santana and Neil Young at the 1993 Earthquake Relief in San Francisco. He played with folk-singer/songwriter Pete Seager on the Smithsonian Folkways recording Well May the World Go, which he also produced. He performs frequently with jazzers Benny Carter, Mose Allison, Dave Leibman, Dewey Redman, Lew Tabakin, Slyde Hampton, Clark Terry, and feels fortunate to have performed with the late Harry ÒSweetsÓ Edison and the late Jack MacDuff.

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