Dick Nolan Country

Encyclopedia of Music In Canada

NOLAN, Dick (Richard Francis). Singer-songwriter, guitarist, b Corner Brook, Nfld, 4 Feb 1939. In his early teens he sang on local radio and in 1954 he gave his first CBC broadcast. In 1958 he moved to Toronto, where he performed in various nightclubs - eg, backing US country stars at the Horseshoe Tavern with his Blue Valley Boys in the 1960s. Recording for *Arc Sound, he made 11 LPs, including albums of songs by Johnny Cash, as well as Newfoundland, Maritime, Christmas and country material. (See Michael Taft's A Regional Discography of Newfoundland and Labrador 1904-1972, St John's 1975). Some were recorded in duet with his daughter Bonnie Lou Nolan or with Marlene Beaudry. The songs 'Golden Rocket' and 'The Fool' were popular in this period.

Nolan returned to Corner Brook in the late 1960s, and appeared on TV, and at the Bella Vista nightclub, and elsewhere. In 1972 he began to record for RCA (*BMG). His first LP, Fisherman's Boy (CAS-2576), included the song 'Aunt Martha's Sheep,' composed by Nolan and a fellow islander, Ellis Coles of Carmanville. Written in the traditional ballad style but with contemporary references in its lyrics, it would be Nolan's biggest hit, and was followed 1972-4 by such singles as 'Home Again This Year' and 'Me and Brother Bill.' Nolan returned in 1973 to Toronto where he has performed in restaurants and nightclubs catering to Newfoundlanders. He has appeared on CBC TV country music shows and in Nashville at the Grand Ole Opry. The most successful of his more than 25 LPs released by Arc Sound, RCA, Pickwick, and *Boot include Fisherman's Boy, Home Again This Year (RCA CASX-2603), and Happy Newfoundlander (RCA KCL1-0012). His songs have been published by Bay Music and Dunbar Music.

Bibliography
McKinley, Edith. 'Making it in Corner Brook with help from Aunt Martha's Sheep,' Canadian Panorama, 10 Mar 1973

McGuirk, Henry. 'Dick Nolan: fisherman's boy ... country boy,' CMN, vol 6, Jun 1985

Author: Mark Miller
ID: 5063

Encyclopedia of Music in Canada

Dick Nolan Country