|Born on: 23.03.1971
Bill Kelliher is a guitarist in the Atlanta heavy metal band Mastodon. He shares guitar duties with Brent Hinds, playing mainly complex rhythm parts. Kelliher is married, with two young sons—the eldest one named Harrison, after Harrison Ford of Star Wars fame. He is also a Star Wars enthusiast, with a large collection of action figures and other merchandise from the franchise.
On June 12, 2007, Hinds and Kelliher won the Metal Hammer Golden Gods award for best shredders, Mastodon's first ever award.
On November 3, 2008, Kelliher was hospitalized with acute pancreatitis during the European Unholy Alliance Chapter 3 tour they participated in. The band continued on tour as a trio, while his condition improved. Kelliher was more recently hospitalized in April 2010 while on tour with Baroness, again with pancreatitis likely induced by Kelliher's heavy drinking. In an interview with Kerrang! Magazine, Kelliher explained that he is committed to maintaining his sobriety, though it is difficult. On May 25, 2010, Mastodon announced that they would cancel their upcoming summer tour in Europe from June 5 to July 3 so that Bill could recover better from his pancreatitis.
Equipment and style
Kelliher uses several guitars in Mastodon: his main guitar is a Gibson Les Paul Custom in a Silverburst finish. He has been seen using other Les Paul Customs in Ebony and Alpine White during the band's 2009 tour with Dethklok. He has also used 3 Gibson explorers: a vintage explorer cmt in tobacco burst and 2 more modern models in black and white, 2 custom Yamaha SGBs and a First Act custom 9-string Silverburst DC Lola, which was built for usage on Mastodon's album Crack the Skye. He also recently (02/2010) took delivery of a Morgan Guitar Works Bird of Prey - a silver futuristic flying V. Kelliher used Laney amplification at one time (specifically, the VH100R head), after that he played a Marshall JCM 800 Kerry King signature. Since 2010 Bill and his bandmate Brent Hinds went on playing the Orange Thunderverb series. He can also be seen playing through a Mesa/Boogie Dual Rectifier in the bonus features of the Aqua Teen Hunger Force Colon Movie Film For Theaters DVD. Kelliher's pedal board includes an Ibanez Tube King, a Boss TU-2 Tuner, an MXR M-135 Smart Noise Gate, and a Digitech Jamman Looper Pedal.
Like his bandmate Hinds, Kelliher also utilizes three tunings in Mastodon: D Standard on the Les Paul (E Standard down one whole step, D G C F A D), Drop C on the Yamaha SGB (Drop D down one whole step, C G C F A D), and another tuning similar to Drop C, but with the low E tuned down to A on the Explorer (A G C F A D).
Bill Kelliher is a longtime user of Seymour Duncan pickups. He uses the SH-6 Duncan Distortion model in the neck and bridge position of his Les Pauls.