Bill Bryant (lyricist)

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Bill Bryant
Bill Bryant
Bill Bryant, 2012
Born William Bryant
(1953-07-29) 29 July 1953 (age 64)
Stokenchurch, Buckinghamshire, England
Occupation Lyricist / Writer
Genre Spirituality
Years active 1982–present
Website
www.hunttheself.com

William Bryant (born 29 July 1953 in Stokenchurch, Buckinghamshire, England) is a British lyricist, writer and speaker on spirituality. He is best known for his work on the Howard Jones number one-selling album Human's Lib, contributing to the lyrics for the tracks "Conditioning", "What Is Love", "Hunt the Self", "Equality", "Natural", and the titular "Human's Lib".[1]

Biography[edit]

Early life[edit]

Bryant’s early childhood was spent in Rayners Lane, London, England. His parents were working class; his father became a lorry driver after serving in the army in World War II and his mother worked in various factories in the locality. Apart from learning Morse code in under two hours, Bryant’s achievements at school were limited. At the age of 15, he became an apprentice instrument maker; something he enjoyed and became very good at.

In 1971, at the age of 18, Bryant met the Indian master, Sree Sree Mentu Maharaj, founder of the Universal Peace Mission. Mentu Maharaj is described as being a Sat Guru, messenger of God, and a world teacher, whose aim was to work for the common purpose of love, unity and peace.[2] After several years of devotion, love, resolve and steadfast following of the teachings of Mentu, at the young age of 21, Bryant experienced a deeply felt, transforming spiritual experience. Changed by the experience, Bryant began to speak and write song lyrics on spirituality. After a time, a small group of followers gathered around Bryant. From his home in High Wycombe, England, he began to hold regular meetings at which he would speak at length on his knowledge and experience.[3]

Howard Jones years[edit]

Bryant was introduced to Howard Jones by two of Jones's brothers.[4] He first met Howard Jones’s brother, Martin Jones, whilst working as an instrument maker in a factory in High Wycombe, England. Bryant and Martin Jones enjoyed each other’s company and a strong friendship formed between them. Martin Jones introduced Bryant to others, including his brother Roy Jones, and from these introductions developed regular meetings at which Bryant would talk to groups of people on spiritual matters.

Martin and Roy Jones were both musicians and began putting Bryant’s words to music. Together they wrote early versions of the songs "Conditioning", "Equality" and "What Is Love", songs that Martin and Roy Jones's brother Howard would include on his first album, Human's Lib. These lyrics were influenced by Eastern philosophy, and describe the freeing of oneself from the personal limitations of one's conditioning, knowledge of love, and the equality and naturalness of life.

Howard Jones became a follower of Bryant after attending one of Bryant's meetings and later reworked some of the songs originally written by his brothers Martin and Roy. Bryant was said to have a powerful influence over Jones.[4] Bryant became Jones’s spiritual mentor and best friend, each being best man for the other at their weddings. Bryant recognised that Jones was an exceptional musician and worked with him to bring his own lyrics and Jones's music to the public.

For several years Bryant guided and supported Jones until such time as Jones attracted the attention of an experienced manager; Dave Stopps, the promoter of the Friars Aylesbury. The partnership between Bryant and Jones ended shortly before Jones’s appearance on BBC Radio One’s Kid Jensen Show [5]

Later years[edit]

In the immediate years that followed the break up with Jones, Bryant wrote lyrics for Horrida Bella a local High Wycombe band before stopping writing and ending his regular open meetings at which he spoke. He earned a living mostly from setting up small businesses in various areas not connected with music.

In 1984, through an initiative to find a new outlet for his songs, Bryant met a young musician called Paul Linn, who, ironically, was a great fan of Howard Jones.[6] Bryant loved Linn’s music and Linn Bryant’s lyrics; thus, a new partnership was born. Bryant helped Linn to purchase equipment and between them they started from scratch to write music together and work out routines that could be played at live venues. Within a year, Bryant and Linn had become very popular and were packing small music venues across England and Wales. However, Bryant and Linn were never to experience the same degree of success as Jones. After a good run of many years, the live gigs came to an end.

Today, Bryant lives with his wife Jo, son William, and mother Maureen in Glastonbury, England. Bryant still continues to write.

References[edit]

  1. ^ AllMusic Human's Lib Howard Jones. Retrieved on 2012-18-02.
  2. ^ "Home Page". 
  3. ^ HuntTheSelf Bill Bryant Bio. Retrieved on 2012-18-02.
  4. ^ a b Fitzgerald, Helen (1985). Howard Jones (1st ed.). London: Bobcat books. pp. 34–35. ISBN 0-7119-0767-6. 
  5. ^ HuntTheSelf Bill Bryant and Howard Jones. Retrieved on 2012-18-02.
  6. ^ Paul Linn. Retrieved on 2012-27-08.