Longtime Maine-based rocker Bill Chinnock used the tag line, “There is a legend in the North Country” for most of his musical career in the Pine Tree State, and the statement just might have been more fact than brag. His musical roots extend back to the Jersey Shore, where he left a band that eventually replaced him with a skinny kid named Bruce Springsteen. Chinnock started playing Maine clubs in 1970 and moved there in 1974. He was a galvanizing performer, a big, burly man with an even bigger voice. He reportedly also occasionally filled in for Michael McDonald in the Doobie Brothers. During his prime, Chinnock knocked out the kind of high energy blues-infused shows that would have gone over in any rock club in America, all cemented by his raw guitar and harmonica work. He recorded 13 albums on both major and local labels and won an Emmy in 1987 for the song “Somewhere in the Night.” Suffering from Lyme disease, Chinnock committed suicide in 2007. He was 59.
(by Dean Johnson)
Published on March 2, 2013