After an abortive collaboration with former All About Eve singer Julianne Regan, Butler formed the duo McAlmont and Butler with David McAlmont, a soul singer with a three-octave range. They released two singles, Yes and You Do, before splitting up acrimoniously. An album, The Sound of McAlmont and Butler, was released after the split. Butler briefly joined The Verve in 1997 after their guitarist, Nick McCabe, temporarily left the band. He went on to release two albums under his own name, People Move On and Friends and Lovers, before making up with McAlmont for a second McAlmont and Butler album, Bring it Back, and two singles, Falling and Bring it Back.
Since then Butler has healed his rift with former Suede singer Brett Anderson, forming a new band, the Tears. The Tears released their highly anticipated debut LP, Here Come The Tears, produced by Butler, in June 2005. Singles include Refugees, which reached #9 in the UK charts, and Lovers.
In between his own projects he has played on and produced records by Sparks, Edwyn Collins, Aimee Mann, Neneh Cherry, Tim Booth (formerly of James), the Manic Street Preachers, Eddi Reader, Hopper, Roy Orbison, Bert Jansch and The Libertines. He created the sountrack to the 1997 film The James Gang and played on the soundtrack of Velvet Goldmine, alongside Thom Yorke and Jonny Greenwood of Radiohead. He has played live with The Cranberries, Paul Weller and Teenage Fanclub.
Butler names former Smiths guitarist Johnny Marr as his major inspiration. Other probable influences include guitarists Peter Green, George Harrison and Steve Howe and producer Phil Spector. He is often compared to Neil Young, although Young's rough-edged, stripped down sound could hardly be more different to Butler's elaborately layered, Wall of Sound arrangements: Creation Records boss Alan McGee, promoting Butler's first solo album, used Young as an example of a former sideman successfully moving to centre-stage.
Bernard Butler Facts
|May 1, 1970 (53)
|London, England, United Kingdom