Reid Wilson

Reid is one of the founding members of FullCircle, and has been with the group since its inception in 1999. His contributions to the band include rich vocals, six and twelve string guitars, mandolin, harmonica and some percussion.

Reid was born on Christmas Eve, December 24, 1949 and raised in Scarborough, Ontario. His mother, Babs, was an English War Bride and his father, Allan, was a WW2 veteran and a Sales Engineer. He has one older brother, Peter, who remembers his little brother as a small child. "Reid would wake up singing. It drove me crazy!" Reid had no formal training, but he has enjoyed singing as a way of expressing himself since early childhood. He taught himself to play guitar at age fourteen. Summers were always spent on Georgian Bay in the Pointe au Baril area where his family purchased an island and built a cottage in 1960. One of his summer friends taught him his first few guitar chords. Summers on Georgian Bay remain a constant in Reid's life, providing peace and spiritual renewal as needed.

Reid has always been a big fan of Gordon Lightfoot, learning most of his songs and performing among friends whenever he had the chance. His wife Margaret remembers camping at Killbear Provincial Park about 25 years ago. “Reid was singing Lightfoot's "Canadian Railroad Trilogy" at a campfire one evening on the beach. The next day we ran into a friend who was camping elsewhere in the park at another campsite. He said he had heard the singing coming from the beach and told his wife, "That's either Gordon Lightfoot singing or Reid Wilson." Reid was also greatly influenced by Peter, Paul and Mary, John Denver and Harry Chapin. A highlight for Reid in the 1960's was performing at The Mousehole in Yorkville. He also performed at other folk venues and church coffeehouses during those early years.

Reid attended R.H. King Collegiate in Scarborough and Dunbarton High School in Pickering. He graduated with a BASc in Geodetic Sciences at Ryerson Polytechnic University in Toronto and was commissioned as an Ontario Land Surveyor (OLS) in 1979. He married Margaret Weir on August 6, 1977 and they have one son, Jason, born in 1979. Just before Jason was born, Reid and Margaret bought a house in South Pickering. Reid worked as an OLS for McConnell, Maughan Ltd. in Toronto at that time, and then at the City of Scarborough for three years. He was offered a position with J.D. Barnes Ltd. in the 1980s and managed their downtown Toronto office for several years. During the years they lived in Pickering, Reid and Margaret were actively involved with the Pickering Naturalists (birding and environmental issues). In 1992, the Wilson family moved to a larger house in Uxbridge. Downsizing at J.D. Barnes Ltd. became the opportunity for Reid to open his own Survey practice. Reid J. Wilson Surveying Ltd. was formed in 1993 and currently operates from his home.

The move to Uxbridge also gave Reid a musical outlet in the form of a community-based variety show called Uxperience. During the 1980s, most of Reid's time was spent on his profession and family. The guitar only came out a few times a year. When Reid found himself at a crossroads after making the move to Uxbridge and leaving J.D. Barnes Ltd., he decided on a shift in priorities. He gradually built up his new business but also took time to enjoy music once again. He participated in the making of a video to accompany the winning song for "Celebrate Durham '94" (the 20th anniversary of the Region of Durham). Through performing with Uxperience, Reid met Judy Seymour and George Pratt. The three of them formed the trio Faded Denim in 1994 singing in the style of Peter, Paul and Mary. They were subsequently joined by bass player Terry Paul. In 1996, Reid was a founding member of Claidhmor (Scottish balladeers) with Stewart Bennett, Fred Cotie and Ryan Edgar. ( Claidhmor continues to perform with the addition of new members but Reid left the group in 2000.)

Reid also enjoys acting and musical theatre. He is a member of the Uxbridge Musical Theatre. His acting debut was as Dr. Neville Craven in “The Secret Garden” in January 1997. He dyed his hair black to star as El Gallo in “The Fantasticks” in October 2000. In January 2001, he played Marcellus Washburn in “The Music Man”. All were memorable experiences of acting, singing and even dancing… at the Music Hall in Uxbridge.

Also, since moving to Uxbridge, Reid attended performances at the Greenbank Folk Society. He also attended some jam sessions on Sunday afternoons in Greenbank. It was at one of these jam sessions that he met Norah Love but they did not exchange any personal information at that time. Almost a year went by before he serendipitously met Norah again. Don and Barb Cavin had been birding acquaintances of Reid and Margaret for years, but oddly, folk singing had never been mentioned in conversation until around 1998. Having started to jam together for a few months, Reid, Don and Barb decided to attend a Unitarian Universalist meeting in Brooklin, Ontario and who should be running the meeting but Norah Love! And, Don and Barb knew Norah's parents!! Small world! The four became fast friends and before long, ..... FullCircle was born.

Reid has really enjoyed the process of producing their first CD "No Straight Lines" almost as much as he enjoys the music. He and Margaret are very proud of their son, Jason, who created the website for FullCircle - long distance, from Australia. Modern technology is truly amazing!

Reid and Margaret are enjoying being "empty nesters". They look forward to travelling the country and getting away from cold, snowy winters … in their new holiday trailer (musical instruments will be standard equipment). Always a priority, most of the summer will be spent on their island in Georgian Bay. Both continue to enjoy many facets of music ...... Margaret singing with the York Highlands Chorus of Sweet Adelines International, and Reid with FullCircle as well as in a new collaboration, with friend Marilynn Massie (a former Sweet Adeline) known as AfterGlow.