The New York Times called Buffalo, NY born Willie Nile "one of the most gifted singer-songwriters to emerge from the New York scene in years." Uncut Magazine called him “A one-man Clash.” His album Streets Of New York was hailed as “a platter for the ages” by Uncut. Rolling Stone listed The Innocent Ones as one of the “Top Ten Best Under-The-Radar Albums of 2011” and BBC Radio called it “THE rock ‘n’ roll album of the year.” His single from that album, “One Guitar,” was the “Top Pick of the Week” in USA Today.
Bono, Bruce Springsteen, Pete Townshend, Lou Reed, Lucinda Williams, Jim Jarmusch, and Little Steven are among those who have sung his praises.
His album, American Ride, won “Best Rock Album of the Year” at the Independent Music Awards. It appeared on dozens of year-end Top Ten lists for 2013 and was voted “Album Of The Year” at Twangville Magazine. Bono called it, “One of the great guides to unraveling the mystery that is the troubled beauty of America.”
In November 2014 he released a new album of piano-based songs, If I Was A River, to universal critical acclaim. “One of the most brilliant singer-songwriters of the past thirty years” said The New Yorker. Uncut called him “the unofficial poet laureate of New York City.”
Willie has toured across the U.S. with The Who and has sung with Bruce Springsteen and The E Street Band. As the induction program from the Buffalo Music Hall of Fame says: “His live performances are legendary.” He is currently touring in North America and working on a new album due for release in early 2016. He lives in New York City.
Bencoolen is a maximalist rock band that includes blues, funk, and soul influences in their sound. The band features soaring vocals, swift sax lines, and huge guitar tones. They were founded early in 2014 by Paul Gregg and Teddy Scott, but ramped up into a touring outfit in February 2016 after adding Will Lockery on the drums and Ben Suarez on bass soon after.
The group recently headed back to record at Inner Ear Studios to capture a new song, focused on getting a raw sound by tracking most of the instruments live. The rhythm section holds down a tight groove as the song builds around thick, slightly overdriven sax and smooth vocal lines before exploding into a ripping guitar solo. The bones of the song came to the table in a collaboration between sax player, Jack Bentsen, and singer/guitarist, Paul Gregg. This new song is called, “In the End” and was released at the end of March 2018.
“In the End”, following previously released singles called “Spotlight” and “The Crown,” describes a journey around the world in pursuit of a love long lost, serving as a metaphor for the lost opportunities that we all try to chase down in life. The artwork depicts a desert scene to emphasize how far the journey can take you.
The band has spent the last year working tirelessly to songwrite and tour. Bencoolen has recently played up and down the East Coast from Savannah, Georgia up to New York City. They have supported tours for Marcus King, Spafford, Mungion, Atlas Road Crew, Mondo Cozmo, and Big Something. The highlights of recent efforts have included slots at Firefly Music Festival in 2017 and at Musikfest in 2018.