Music & Miscellaneous Travels
Bill Ackerbauer wrote his first song in the fourth grade and hasn't stopped since. He grew up singing in school and church choirs and picked up the harmonica - the first of many instruments he plays - while an undergraduate at Union College in the 1990s. After college, he picked up the guitar and then the mandolin, banjo, fiddle, ukulele and other instruments. Heavily influenced by American and Irish traditional and roots music, he performed as a solo 'folk singer' before briefly playing with the Bluegrass/Gospel group Durey Creek in the mid-2000s. Around 2006, Bill joined Roland Vinyard to form The Bentwood Rockers, an old-timey string band duo that released a studio album, Raised in a Lion's Den, in 2013 and later issued an album of live recordings, All Night Long.
Bill's debut solo EP, Discovery, was issued in February 2017, and another, full-length solo album is on the horizon. Bill, who is the father of three boys and loves to perform for children and families, also is working on an album of kid-friendly music.
Since 2015, Bill has been playing acoustic Americana with Bill Healy and Bob Zink as The Doghouse Carpenters, and he's been playing acoustic rock, blues, soul and more with Frank DeVer Pullen as The Insolent Willies. (Their debut EP, Five for the Road, is available now.).
When Bill isn't writing songs, playing gigs or recording, he teaches guitar, fiddle, uke and mandolin lessons both privately and at the Paul Nigra Center for Creative Arts.
He also has a day job as a human-services caseworker, and he volunteers with a number of community organizations, including the Johnstown School Museum, and he is the founder and coordinator of the upcoming Johnstown Midsummer Concert Series, which will launch in Summer 2018.
Bill also is a veteran newspaper journalist, college writing instructor and former UAlbany lecturer in journalism who has several Associated Press and NYNPA writing awards to his credit, and in 2011 he was honored with a National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowship. (For more details about Bill's non-musical professional credentials, see his resume.)