Bill MacCormick (801, Phil Manzanera, Quiet Sun)

A composer, collaborator, session player, and band-member, Bill MacCormick anchored some of the most influential and groundbreaking slabs of the “Canterbury Scene” – the late ’60s, early-to-mid ’70s period centered in Kent, England wherein musicians created a unique blend of progressive, jazz, and psychedelia. 


To my ears, among the most stellar of Bill’s sides is 801 Live: a collaborative effort of MacCormick, Phil Manzanera, Brian Eno, Simon Philips, Francis Monkman, and Lloyd Watson. Captured at London’s Queen Elizabeth Hall 3 September 1976, MacCormick is up in the mix, plying soulful grooves and countermelodies with an incredibly punchy Precision bass tone which can only be described as “funky prog-rock.” MacCormick anchored several Manzanera ensembles on various album projects over the years including Diamond Head, K-Scope, Listen Now, and 6PM.  


Bill’s distinctive rhythm & blues approach to the genre was unique, as evidenced on such watershed albums by Quiet Sun (Mainstream), Brian Eno (Here Come the Warm Jets), and Robert Wyatt (Nothing Can Stop Us, Matching Mole), to cite a select few.


Following his music career, MacCormick ventured into politics, and journalism – authoring books on the London 56th Infantry, and the Battle of Somme.


Bill MacCormick Sound & Vision…


Quiet Sun: “Mummy Was An Asteroid, Daddy Was A Small Non-Stick Kitchen Utensil”


801: “Tomorrow Never Knows”


Phil Manzanera’s 801 “Listen Now”


Phil Manzanera “Wish You Well”