Chilliwack are a Canadian rock band that had their heyday during the 1970s and 1980s. They are perhaps best remembered for their three biggest songs "My Girl (Gone Gone Gone)", "I Believe" and "Whatcha Gonna Do." The band's lineup has changed numerous times, though Bill Henderson has constantly remained a fixture, and Chilliwack continues to tour across Canada. The band initially formed as the Classics (1964) in Vancouver, British Columbia, but later changed the name to the Collectors (1966). Their psychedelic debut album yielded the minor hit 'Lydia Purple'. A second album was based on the musical score written by the band for a stage play by Canadian playwright George Ryga, Grass and Wild Strawberries.
Chilliwack effectively began with the departure of vocalist Howie Vickers from the Collectors in 1969; however, the band didn't change its name until 1970, to Chilliwack, a Salish term meaning "going back up" and the name of a city east of Vancouver in the Fraser River valley. With lead guitarist Bill Henderson now providing most of the vocals and doing most of the composing, the band released several records that were moderately successful in Canada. Hit singles in Canada included "Lonesome Mary", "Crazy Talk" and "Fly at Night". The album track "Rain-o", a blues-based composition that appeared in different versions on the Chilliwack debut album and the later "Dreams, Dreams, Dreams", was a well-known concert favourite.
In 1978, Brian MacLeod (guitar, drums, keyboards) and Ab Bryant (bass) joined the band. Chilliwack enjoyed its greatest success with this new lineup. The singles "My Girl (Gone, Gone, Gone)" (1981), "I Believe" (1982), and "Whatcha Gonna Do (When I'm Gone)" (1982) were popular both in Canada.
Henderson and MacLeod received a Best Producer Juno Award in 1982 for Opus X. MacLeod left the band soon after, and Chilliwack's last new recording was released in 1984. Henderson and Lawrence continued to tour with other players until December 1988. In 1989 Henderson went on to form the band UHF. With bassist Ab Bryant, Brian initially formed The Headpins as a "side project" to Chilliwack, at least partially as a source of additional income. After Opus X Brian left Chilliwack to focus his efforts on The Headpins.
Brian was diagnosed with brain cancer in the late 1980s. After his death in 1992, several friends organised the Brian MacLeod Benefit Concerts which featured some of the best musicians on the Canadian music scene and continued through 1997.
2005 saw Chilliwack play Voyageur Days Festival in Mattawa, Ontario, Canada (near North Bay) with other Canadian bands Moxy, Toronto, Trooper, Goddo, Killer Dwarfs and Ray Lyell for the thirtieth anniversary for release of the debut album by Moxy.
Bass player Ab Bryant's son Matt Bryant is the singer/songwriter and founding member of Canadian roots/folk band Headwater.