Bill & Boyd Profile

Chris Bourke
27 Nov 2013

Lower Hutt in the mid-1950s looked like a staid dormitory city for workers who commuted daily to Wellington on the “unit”. The working-class suburb of Naenae was dominated by newly built state houses; on a royal tour, the Queen said the sight was evidence of the country’s “ordered prosperity”.

But behind the rows of treeless front lawns and weatherboard houses, music was being made. Early adopters of rock and roll, the Hutt Valley’s teenagers flocked to local halls, where youth clubs organised dances and talent quests so that there was no repetition of the local sexual shenanigans investigated by the 1954 Mazengarb report into juvenile delinquency.

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Bill and Boyd in Gisborne, May 1963
Photo credit: Gisborne Photo News
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Bill & Boyd filming in Wellington in the early to mid 1960s
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Come Running
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Bill and Boyd in 1964
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Bill and Boyd at the Pines, early 1960s: Boyd Robertson, left, and Bill Cate
Photo credit: Don Peat
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Last Train To Clarkesville
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Bill and Boyd at the wedding of Bill Cate, November 1964
Photo credit: Photo by Morrie Hill. Alexander Turnbull Library
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Bill and Boyd in Gisborne, June 1962
Photo credit: Gisborne Photo News
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1967 Australian EP on the Sunshine label
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1964 Philips release produced by future Virgin Records New Zealand Managing Director Brian Pitts. The cover was designed by Arnold Hansson with photography by Neville Atkinson and liner notes written by the label’s John McCready.
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Santa Never Made it into Darwin
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Hawaiian Cowboy
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Put Another Log On The Fire
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Warmed Over Kisses
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The first Philips release by Bill & Boyd was a cover of Gene Pitney's I Wanna Love My Life Away in 1961
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Bill & Boyd filming in Wellington in the early to mid 1960s
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Got A Lot Of Living To Do
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The second NZ single from 1960, on the small Christchurch based Peak label
Photo credit: Simon Grigg Collection
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Debut album recorded for Philips in 1962 and produced by future EMI recording engineer Frank Douglas
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Members:

Bill Boyd Robertson - vocals, guitar

Bill Cate - vocals, guitar

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Labels:

Peak Records


Philips

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Trivia:

Phil Warren suggested they name their act Bill & Boyd.

Waylon Jennings also covered their biggest hit, 'Put Another Log on the Fire'.

Bill Cate first began performing regularly during World War II as a child singer at patriotic fundraising concerts.