William Earl Collins (born October 26, 1951, Cincinnati, Ohio), known as Bootsy Collins is an avant-garde funk bassist, singer and songwriter.
In 1968, along with his older brother, Phelps 'Catfish' Collins (guitar), accompanied by Franky 'Kash' Waddy (drums) and Philippe Wynne (vocals), Bootsy Collins formed The Pace-Setters>. In 1969, the group quickly replaced Famous Flame, James Brown's orchestra, and became the J.B.'s.
Rumor has it that James Brown dismissed Bootsy Collins after he had hallucinations due to LSD on stage. Bootsy will later explain in the French monthly magazine Bass Mag that he had never spoken to James Brown again from an episode where the acid bassist had burst out laughing as Brown lectured him after a more or less successful concert. Collins, on the advice of the future member of The Parliaments, Mallia Franklin (en) , moved in Detroit.
Franklin introduced the Collins brothers to George Clinton and they joined the Funkadelic group. Bootsy plays on most of their first albums and participates in the writing of some songs. His playing was hard and rhythmic and had some influence on the evolution of funk, heavy metal, G-funk and soul. His bass lines are then more and more passed through various effects pedals, envelope filters, autowah, chorus ... everything goes and contributes to the particularly funky sound of Bootsy.