Bill & Boyd Profile

aka Bill and Boyd
Chris Bourke
Published: 27 Nov 2013
Updated: 3 Dec 2020

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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Warmed Over Kisses
Brylcreem at the beach, East Cape, December 1962: Boyd Robertson, Fred Lawrence (Australian bassist), Bob Paris, Bill Cate.
Photo credit: Bruce King
Bill & Boyd recording in Wellington during their tour, early 1960s.
Photo credit: Bruce King
Bill & Boyd at the Central Coast Leagues Club, Gosford, NSW, 1976. Boyd Robertson left, Bill Cate right.
Photo credit: Courtesy of the Central Coast Council Library, NSW
'Corinna Corinna', the last of five singles on the small Christchurch-based Peak label, 1961. Bill & Boyd moved to Philips NZ, Peak's distributor. 
Photo credit: Simon Grigg Collection
Hawaiian Cowboy
Bill & Boyd filming in Wellington, c. 1968. Bill Cate left, Boyd Robertson right. 
Santa Never Made it into Darwin
Boyd Robertson left, and Bill Cate: a mid-60s publicity shot of Bill and Boyd.
Bill and Boyd - Put Another Log On the Fire (Stetson, 1975)
Bill and Boyd at the Pines, early 1960s: Boyd Robertson, left, and Bill Cate
Photo credit: Don Peat
Bill and Boyd at the wedding of Bill Cate (left), November 1964. Boyd Robertson at right. 
Photo credit: Photo by Morrie Hill. Ref 1/4-071861-F, Alexander Turnbull Library, Wellington
Come Running
The first Philips release by Bill & Boyd was a cover of Gene Pitney's I Wanna Love My Life Away in 1961
Last Train To Clarkesville
Bill & Boyd filming in Wellington, c. 1968. 
Left to right: Bob Paris, Bill Cate, and Boyd Robertson. Photo taken for 'Son of Western', a 1963 musical show produced in Wellington by WNTV-1. It also starred Lyn Barnett, Bas Tubert, and Laurie Lewis and the Blockbusters.
Photo credit: Chris Bourke collection
Debut album recorded for Philips in 1962 and produced by future EMI recording engineer Frank Douglas
Got A Lot Of Living To Do
Bill and Boyd in Gisborne, May 1963. Boyd Robertson left, Bill Cate right.
Photo credit: Gisborne Photo News
Bill and Boyd - Santa Never Made It To Darwin (Fable, 1975)
Bill and Boyd in Gisborne, June 1962. Boyd Robertson left, Bill Cate right. 
Photo credit: Gisborne Photo News
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.
Bill & Boyd recording in Wellington during a tour, early 1960s.
Photo credit: Bruce King
Bill and Boyd in 1964. Boyd Robertson left, Bill Cate right.
1967 Australian EP on the Sunshine label
Put Another Log On The Fire
Labels:

Peak Records


Philips

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.

Members:

Bill Boyd Robertson - vocals, guitar

Bill Cate - vocals, guitar

Chulu Chululu