1964: my first album, A Hard Day's Night. I've seen two Beatles in my life: John Lennon with the Plastic Ono Band at the Toronto Rock & Roll Revival in 1969 and Sir Paul McCartney at the Da Vinci exhibition in 2011 — just one musical genius, two curators, two Virgins of the Rocks and one star-struck fan in the room. 

1970: wrote my first song which I played at a high school concert, then university gigs. When my children were small I tried out my kids' tunes at MUN daycare. Formative influences: Fab Four, James Taylor, Carole King, Dylan, Tim Ochitwa, Tom Lehrer.

1996: Bill Martin (a former student) & I formed the Disclaimers, an antidote to the Proclaimers. We wrote our own satirical songs — Bill's 'Sobey's Bartlett Pears' set to 'Barrett's Privateers' was a hit — & played a few gigs around campus, at the Ship and on CBC Radio until Bill met his future spouse online and moved to B.C.

2012: English 3912 Songwriting launched. One of my better ideas: our province has spawned some great songwriters, so I thought it was time the University expanded its Creative Writing programme. Time and again Memorial students have pooled their talents to produce some amazing musical gems.

2015-20: I started on GarageBand, graduated to Logic Prox X, and hope to lay down tracks to 200+ songs as I prepare to become a busker in my next set. 


• ‘Come All Ye’ choral performance, dir. Doug Dunsmore, Garrick Theatre, Bonavista (6 Oct. 2015 & 25 Oct. 2016)

• English 3912 Final Concerts (14 Apr. 2012, 7 Apr. 2014, 10 Apr. 2015, 6 Apr. 2016, 7 Apr. 2017, 6 Dec. 2017)

• Backup vocalist, ‘Bankers’ Song’ video, Dancing with Rage, Mary Walsh (2012)

• 300 Years of Fools Rush In, with Mike Shute (Religious Studies) and Chris LeDrew, MUN (1 April 2011)

• Graduate fundraiser (20 Oct. 2008)

• Open Mic, Ship Inn, with Ruth Perry (10 Oct. 2007)

• Four classes including one on Dylan, with Mike Shute and Chris LeDrew, MUN (29 March 2007)

• ‘Curiosities & Ephemera,’ with Kevin Berland & Ruth Perry, ASECS, Las Vegas (2 April 2005)

• The Disclaimers (town & gown satirical duet with Bill Martin): Breaking out of the Books, MUN (20 Mar. 1999); Ship Inn (21 Mar. 1998); Bitters grad. pub (11 Feb. 1998); Dept. function (5 Dec. 1997); ‘SCUM Unearthed,’ Staff/Student revue (3 Dec. 1997)

• ‘Telling it like it isn’t,’ MUN English Colloquium & CBC Radio Noon (21 Nov. 1997)

• Solo: Bitters (28 Jan. 1998)

• ‘If Tom Lehrer were alive & sick in the 18th century,’ ASECS, Nashville (12 Apr. 1997)

• BSECS Banquet (6 Jan. 1996)

• Dept. functions, preschool classes &c. (14 gigs, 1991-95)

• ‘On Rooftarring,’ CBC-Radio, ‘On the Go’ (29 July 1989)

• ‘CBC Existentially,’ winner in Pop (Folk) Song category (3 May 1987).

Over the years I've met some great singer-songwriters:

Tom Waits on my first trip to London in 1976
Van Morrison over a couple of cups of coffee in 1983
Ron Hynes who played 'My Old Man' for my father on his 85th birthday.



Don Nichol

230 Elizabeth Ave, St. John's, NL, CANADA, A1B 3X9

Postal Address: P.O. Box 4200, St. John's, NL, CANADA, A1C 5S7

Tel: (709) 864-8000