We are deeply sorry for your loss - the staff at Spear Miller Funeral Home
William (Bill) Bausman Verdier of Nashville, TN died in Bridgeport, Conn. on Friday, February 25, 2022, during a visit with family. Bill was born in Philadelphia, Penn. on February 12, 1958, to the late William Edward Verdier and Edith Huber Verdier. The family moved from Havertown, Penn. to Fairfield, Conn. in 1969. He graduated from Roger Ludlowe High School in Fairfield in 1976, and studied at Northeastern University (Boston) and Keene State University (N.H.).
Bill was a consummate fiddle player, teacher, mentor, friend, and radio host. He discovered his gift for music at age 12, when his mother handed him her own violin (the same violin he played throughout his life) and opened the door to music lessons, the Greater Bridgeport Youth Symphony Orchestra, and eventually university studies of orchestral, chamber and solo performance. He first made a switch to American styles after hearing the David Bromberg Band and later to Irish music after hearing a concert by Kevin Burke. The contradance scene of southern New Hampshire in the late 70s and early 80s was an early introduction to the energy that dancers and musicians create together. He hosted radio shows at Keene State and WPKN (Bridgeport, Conn.). and worked for the Green Linnet Record label.
He moved to Nashville in 1994 and became active in the recording industry and performance of Irish music while also working as a drafter and cabinet designer. He performed with the Rogues (Sherlock Holmes Pub), Isla, the Boys of County Nashville (Opryland Hotel), and The Nashville Ceili Band (playing for dances throughout the region and four consecutive appearances at the Milwaukee Irish Music festival). He was an honorary member of the house band at McNamara's Pub and played regularly with a host of musician friends at McCreary's Pub. A great joy to him and many others was the radio show "Down the Back Lane" that he created and co-hosted on WXNA FM, and the regular session that he co-hosted at McNamara's Pub where he inspired a legion of young players who will ensure the music continues and flourishes. He will be greatly missed by all who play and love Irish music in Nashville and elsewhere.
Bill was a gentle and loving soul, quiet but also quick to respond and connect with people. He lived and loved outside himself, cared deeply about justice and fairness, had a wicked sense of humor, and was deeply loved by all who knew him.
Bill is survived by his sisters Katherine Elizabeth Verdier and Susan Verdier Burnett, Fairfield; his partner Anne Hoos, Nashville; his brother-in-law Jeff Burnett, Providence, R.I.; and his niece Sarah Burnett and nephew Patrick Burnett, Providence, R.I. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in his name to either the Deacons Fund of First Congregational Church, Fairfield, Conn. (203-259-8396) or to the Bill Verdier Memorial Scholarship (billverdier.com/memorial-scholarship).
Family and friends in the Northeast are invited to attend a Memorial Service on Sunday, March 6, 2022 at 2 p.m. at the First Congregational Church, 148 Beach Rd., Fairfield, Conn. Family and friends in the Southeast are invited to a Celebration of Life on April 3, 2022 at 2 p.m. at McNamara’s Irish Pub and Restaurant, 2740 Old Lebanon Pike, Nashville, TN. Please leave online condolences at spearfuneralhome.com.
First Church Congregational Deacon's Fund
148 Beach Road, Fairfield CT 06824
Bill Verdier Memorial Scholarship