The ability to combine melody, poetry, and story-telling with social consciousness, a gift that gives on many levels, is present in Linda’s original music. Linda’s music has been influenced by her early life experiences of always being uprooted. She is able to see the many layers that exist in the people that have passed by and those who have stayed a while. Born in Pittsburg, Pennsylvania she grew up in the Midwest and migrated to Arizona to experience the “West”.
The subject matter of Linda’s songs is diverse and touches the heart. The songs take you places that you can see and feel in the stories and in yourself.
Her first commercial release Twists of Fate, captures the flavor of the Southwest with songs like Mother of Mexico which takes place in the Yaqui Indian community of Guadalupe. Lucky is a story of trailer park love in Tucson, and Dat-So-La-Lee which speaks of the tragedy of the lost art of the great Indian basket weaver.
Linda’s second CD, Side Tracked visits Loretta at the dollar store; presents the legacy of the cowboy women of Cochise County in We Were the Cowboys; and remembers the day of the dead and a love left behind in Dia De Los Muertos.
Borrowing Time, released in 2011, features songs of the road--Empty Places, a guitar playing anthem--Mama Got a Six String and, For Fahey, a tribute to finger-picking great, John Fahey.
Linda's 2014 CD, Good & Gone is a tribute to, "all those we have loved and lost and those left behind." Cowboys, Christmas, Evelyn, and the Lady in The Moon are just a few of the characters that populate Good & Gone as they try to navigate life's challenges. A lot of foot tapping music is on this album!
Fresh Cuts, released in 2017 is titled from her song about a musician trying to balance life and the road. Fire up the Mercury Marquis and along the way you will meet Ora Mae, a woman determined to have independence and Claire, a caregiver for a traumatic brain injury survivor. Relax with the instrumental Broken Wing, the story of a Killdeer bird performing the defense dance. Raise your voice with Hey Joe, a tribute to Arizona's iconic musician, Joe Bethencourt. When the day is done, saddle up with Jake, Jack & Yol and Ride Em, Tonight.
Promised Land, Linda's latest CD ( 2021) is a 12 song story book reflecting her unique song craft. The title song Promised Land sets the tone of the album with Linda's story telling front and center. Deal With the Devil has the toe-tappin’ Cab Calloway feel. Could Have Been, is a song for change and hope. Everyday Things speaks to what is so simple but important in life. A Little More Time is a plea for more time to write songs. There are three instrumental journeys, Lullaby For Charlotte Monroe, a love song for a little one. Raven In The Canyon flies through the canyons with soaring dobro lines and When We Love takes it all down to the basic heart-beat.. Hope you enjoy all the tunes on Promised Land.
Kudos for Linda's Music
I wish I could be side tracked the way Linda Bilque was when she produced her new CD. Just when I think I have earned the right to rest a bit and have my social conscience take a break, Linda’s songs remind me there is a lot more of life to appreciate and ponder. It has become Bilque’s life’s work to introduce us to Loretta, from the dollar store, hand in hand with the recovering addict in Walkin' the Cat, and those blessed Cowboy Women. We were the mothers and we were the lovers and we were the cowboys too; We drove our own stakes and killed our own snakes and rode off under the blue. The Queen of Novenas, The Day of the Dead, Michael, the tribute to the fallen Marine, and the poignant song for those living with Alzheimer’s all of the songs on Linda Bilque’s Side Tracked, remind us, once again, this vast, measureless family we call humanity is larger than we imagined. Her songs honor and give names to the faces we pass on the street every day.
---Jill Harke, Co Producer, John Muir Tribute CD