Billy Miller, the man, who along with his wife Miriam Linna, was behind Norton Records, passed away, at the age of 62, last Sunday at his Home in Brooklyn, as The New York Times report. According to his wife, the cause was complications of multiple myeloma, kidney failure and diabetes.
Obscure rockabilly artists and garage bands found their label ‘refuge’ in Norton Records, which was founded in 1986. Hasil Adkins & Link Wray were among the artists that Billy & Miriam shared their passion with the world. The most accurate description about Billy’s label is the one from The Village Voice: “the definitive provider of rockabilly reissues from the ’50s, ’60s and ’70s.“
Billy Miller himself was also an active musician, first with the rockabilly band The Zantees:
…Later with garage group The A-Bones:
….and the immaculate side-project The Fezmen:
In 2009, the active couple founded Kicks Books, which has published pulp fiction titles like “Pulling A Train” by Harlan Ellison and the sci-fi poetry of the jazz master Sun Ra.
Plenty more to say about this rock n’ roll activist…. The New York Times’ article about the man is more than enough for now.
This is it then…Rest in Peace Billy Miller. Closing this with the writings of his beloved wife Miriam, expressing her world of grief on this Facebook post: ‘This is the first morning in 39 years, one month and one day, without the precious love of Billy Miller. Listening to Nolan Strong this morning, as has been ritual here for such a very long time. Oh, Billy..‘