|Birth name||William Michael Albert Broad|
|Born||November 30, 1955|
Stanmore, Middlesex, England
|Genres||Punk Rock, Hard Rock, Glam Rock, Dance Rock, New Wave, Post-Punk|
|Occupation||Musician, singer-songwriter, actor|
|Instruments||Vocals, guitar, bass, drums|
|Labels||Chrysalis, EMI, Sanctuary|
|Associated acts||Generation X|
Billy Idol (born William Michael Albert Broad on November 30, 1955) is an English rock musician who first found fame as a member of Generation X. Despite his origins in the punk rock era, he was inspired by the Beatles and the Rolling Stones. He later launched a solo career, becoming part of the "Second British Invasion" of the United States, and his music videos made him an early MTV staple. Some of his most well-known songs include "White Wedding", "Rebel Yell" and "Eyes Without a Face". He continues to tour to this day.
Idol's professional surname is derived from a schoolteacher's description of him as "idle".
Idol was born in Stanmore, Middlesex. His family moved to Bromley in Kent, where he received his education and joined the Bromley Contingent (a group of Sex Pistols fans who travelled wherever the band was playing). In 1977 he co-founded Generation X with Tony James, a bandmate from his previous band Chelsea. Generation X took inspiration from 60's pop, giving them a contrasting sound to more militant punk groups like the Clash and the Pistols.
Having left Generation X in 1981 to pursue a solo career, Idol joined guitarist Steve Stevens, with whom he still tours nowadays. His videos for "White Wedding" and "Dancing with Myself", the latter of which is a re-recorded Generation X song, made him very popular on MTV. His second album, Rebel Yell, was certified double platinum and Idol became an established musician in the United States and other countries. In 1991 he won a BRIT award for Best British Video.
Billy Idol was the opening act for Duran Duran during certain dates of The Sing Blue Silver Tour in 1984. He mainly performed songs from his Rebel Yell album, such as the title track and "Eyes Without a Face", as well as some hits from his previous albums.
In 1995, Idol performed with the Neurotic Outsiders at the Viper Room in Hollywood, California. He contributed vocals on "Stepping Stone", "Pretty Vacant", "Ready Steady Go" and "Fun". These songs were released on the live album Hollywood's Burning.