Billy was born in 1949 on the White City Estate in London's Shepherds Bush into a musical family where his father, Bill Nicholls, played double-bass and sang in the RAF band, 'The Squadronairs'. There was always music being played and harmonies to learn, building a solid foundation to his musical knowledge.
Later, at Christopher Wren School, and with the encouragement of his English tutor Robert Tanitch, he got very involved in the school drama productions. It seemed a natural progression for Billy to write songs, and it wasn't long before he had a job in the music industry and access to recording studios.
His debut album 'WOULD YOU BELIEVE' was never really released due to the collapse of Immediate Records, where he was signed as a resident singer/songwriter.
Since then his songs have been recorded by many well-known artists including Del Shannon, Pete Townshend, Leo Sayer, Long John Baldry, The Babies, The Outlaws, Roger Daltrey, Justin Hayward, Kiki Dee, Marilyn Martin, Jon Astley, Little Angels, Phil Manzanera, Ruby Turner, The Chieftains and Phil Collins. (See below for a comprehensive list of artist covers).
GM Records released his second album 'LOVE SONGS' in 1974.
Leo Sayer had a top ten hit in 1977 with Billy's song, "Can't Stop Loving You", originally recorded for the 'WHITE HORSE' album, which was a collection of works by Billy and LA writers; Jon Lind and Kenny Altman.
Billy wrote four of the songs used in the soundtrack for the biographical film "McVICAR". One of these, "Without your Love", reached the top twenty in the National US Charts. Pete Townshend included Billy's song "Forever's No Time At All" on his solo project 'WHO CAME FIRST'. He also contributed a number of songs to Pete's 'PSYCHODERELICT' album.
Billy collaborated with Phil Manzanera on two tracks for the 'UNDER ONE BANNER' Album.
Morgan's 'ORGANIZED' album released in 2000 on the Source label features several tracks written by father and son.
Phil Collins had a huge success with "Can't Stop Loving You" in 2002/3; first used in a TV commercial for Toyota's Avalon Motor, it then became a hit across the States in the radio playlist charts. It features on Phil's worldwide successful 'TESTIFY' Album, his collection of 'LOVE SONGS' and in the DVD of 'FINALLY... THE FIRST FAREWELL TOUR'. Consequently, Billy received two ASCAP awards for 'Can't Stop Loving You' as the most performed song by an English Songwriter in both 2002 & 2003.
Billy set up his own record company 'Southwest Records' in 1998; re-mastered all his previous albums and put together a demo album of early work called 'SNAPSHOT'.
Two more albums of original material followed, namely 'PENUMBRA MOON' and 'STILL ENTWINED' and Sanctuary Records released a 2xCD Anthology of Billy's music in May 2005 entitled 'FOREVER'S NO TIME AT ALL'.
'ROSSLYN ROAD' a collaboration with his brother Mike was released in 2008.
'MEHER BABA' a collection of songs inspired by following his teachings.
'A SECRET GAME ' released on 7th November 2016; some old songs revisited and re-recorded plus some new compositions.
List of artists, songs, album and year of release.
'Led Along'. Single 1967.
'Cut and Come Again', 'Friendly With You', 'Led Along''. Album: 'And The Music Plays On' 1978.
'London Social Degree' and 'Life Is Short'. Album: 'Foolish Seasons' 1968.
'Forever's No Time At All'. Solo Album: 'Who Came First'. 1973.
'Forever's No Time At All' / 'This Song Is Green'. Single 1973.
Long John Baldry
'This Boys In Love Again'. Single & Album 1976.
'Can't Stop Loving You'. Single & Album: 'Leo Sayer' 1978. Album: ''The Very Best Of Leo Sayer' 1979.
'White Lightning'. Album: 'Head First' 1978.
'Can't Stop Loving You'. Single & Album: 'Ghost Riders' 1980.
'I Won't Be The One', 'McVicar', 'Waiting For A Friend,' 'Without Your Love' ,'White City Lights'. From the 'McVicar' Film Soundtrack & Album 1980.
'Without Your Love' Album:'Best Bits' 1982.
'Penumbra Moon'. Album: 'Night Flight' 1980.
'Heaven Come Quickly'. Album: 'Life' 1981.
'Under One Banner'. Album: 'Modern Dreams' 1981.
'Under One Banner'. 1990s.
'Suffering Fools'. Co-Write. Album: 'Everyone Loves The Pilot' 1987.
'I Dream About You (But I Cannot Sleep)' Co-Write. Album: 'The Complete Angler' 1988.
'Homeless'. Co-Write. Album: 'This Is Serious' 1988.
'Do You Wanna Riot'. Co-Write. 1989.
'Put Love In Your Heart' 'Without Love'. Co-Write. Album: 'Under One Banner' 1990.
'It's Magic'. Co-Write Late 1980s.
'Then I Saw White Horses'. Co-Write 1990s.
'Flying High', 'Here Comes The Rain', 'Paparazzi', 'Heaven Come Quickly', 'Something He Said', ' Soul Searching'. Co-Write Album: 'Organized' 2000.
'Can't Stop Loving You'. Single and Albums: 'Testify' 2002 and 'Love Songs' 2004 and 'The Singles' in 2016.
'Can't Stop Loving You'. Album: 'Love, Pain and the Whole Crazy Thing' 2006.
Beautiful version of 'I Can't stop Loving You' on her album "Good things happen over coffee' released in 2011
Single release of 'Can't Stop Loving You' in December 2013 following the success of the Barclay Premier League Advert on TV.