Paul Riley (musician)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Paul Riley
Also known as Paul "Bassman" Riley
Paul Bass
Born (1951-10-03) 3 October 1951 (age 65)
Origin Islington, London
Genres Pub Rock
Occupation(s) Musician
Instruments Bass Guitar
Years active 1970s - present
Associated acts Chilli Willi and the Red Hot Peppers
Nick Lowe
The Sinceros
The Balham Alligators

Paul Riley (born 3 October 1951, Islington, London) is an English bassist, singer and record producer. He was a member of Chilli Willi and the Red Hot Peppers and Roogalator in the 1970s.


His career in music began at the beginning of the 1970s as bass player with various visiting blues artists, notably: Albert Collins, Champion Jack Dupree, Bobby Parker, Lightnin' Slim, Homesick James - and continued through the decade with seminal pub-rockers Chilli Willi and the Red Hot Peppers, Robin Scott, the embryonic Rockpile (as featured on the album Get It), and with guitarist Danny Adler's Roogalator.

By the closing years of the 1970s he'd become involved in record production and (briefly) artist-management, co-managing and producing The Sinceros. As the 70s moved into the 80s he took over the running of Nick Lowe's 'AMPRO' studio, and was recording full-time - subsequently producing and/or engineering records for Lew Lewis, Carlene Carter, Elvis Costello, Nick Lowe, Johnny Marr, The Anti-Nowhere League, The Ruts, Robert Wyatt, Edwyn Collins, Squeeze, Paul Carrack, Kirsty McColl and more. In 1985 he was invited to join the staff of Demon Records to add some technical understanding and help enable production of the brand-new compact-disc format, to assume responsibility for all mastering issues and to become archivist of the burgeoning tape archive (a legacy of the prodigious output of Elvis Costello, Nick Lowe and all former Riviera Global artists). Three years later he could be found moonlighting on bass with The Tex Pistols (alongside former Chilli Willi drummer Pete Thomas ), and later, in 1992, continued moonlighting activities with The Balham Alligators, playing alongside Geraint Watkins and Bobby Irwin with whom in 1994 he would serve as a member of Nick Lowe's Impossible Birds, his last regular gig as a musician.

He left Demon in 1995, and after the dissolution of the Impossible Birds was co-opted into the business of his old pal, Malcolm Mills, founder of Proper Records.

Since the building of Specific Sound, Proper Records' in-house recording facility, he has recorded the following albums:

  • "All Is Know", Tony Kofi Quartet
  • "Yeah", Alan Barnes
  • "Noted", Anita Wardell
  • "Future Passed", Tony Kofi Trio
  • "Hammer of the Honky Tonk Gods", Bill Kirchen (recorded and produced)
  • "Kinda Blue", Anita Wardell
  • "The Silent Truth", Tony Kofi Quartet
  • "The Lost Gershwin", Victoria Hart
  • "Word To The Wise", Bill Kirchen (recorded and produced)
  • "Jaywalkin'", Jay Phelpps


  • Vladimir Bogdanov, Chris Woodstra, All Music Guide to Country: The Definitive Guide to Country Music - Page 143, 2003, Backbeat Books, ISBN 0-87930-760-9
  • Peter Buckley, The Rough Guide to Rock - Page 465, 2003, Rough Guides, ISBN 1-84353-105-4