PITTSBURGH, PA – In the days and weeks immediately following his honorable discharge from the U.S. Army National Guard, William Fowler (better known on stage as “Willfowl”) often found himself restless. He began working at the bank, and every day on his lunch break he would help alleviate that restlessness by taking a walk. At first, his walks were a chance to have a smoke and stretch his legs. As he began to walk farther and explore downtown Pittsburgh, he would make voice memos to himself of things he had to do later in the day or reminders for things later in the week. One day on his lunch break he was inspired to use his voice memos to record a story. He loved the experience so much that he did it the next day, and the next, and soon those stories started turning into poems and raps.
Today Willfowl has launched a 13-song album that he playfully has called “Lunch Break.” It’s a nod not only to the beginning of his career as a musician, but also as a way of examining his journey from just another businessman to what is becoming a budding hip-hop artist.
“Most of the songs on this album are smokes songs and laid back,” Willfowl said. “But the more I get into it, the more intense I get with some of my life stories and my situations in life coming up. When I was going to college and transitioned to an office job, it wasn’t the same as what I thought it would be. I used to write music before school, and when I started writing music again the first song I wrote was called ‘Lunch Break,’ because those times when I could get away reminded me how much I love music and what I really wanted to do with my life.”
The hip-hop world is all the better for it, because Willfowl’s wordplay is so unique that already it’s getting attention from fans all throughout the Northeast. That’s because the stories he tells are ones that almost anyone can relate to – especially those who have gone to college and felt disillusioned by the real world.
“I’m not someone who grew up with parents who did music or anything like that,” Willfowl said. “I’ve always been good at writing – I can paint pictures with my words. And my wordplay and rhyming is good. Combine that with the stories I tell and the decisions I’ve made, and you can see that I have a different calling, and that’s music. It’s not data analysis or loan analysis – it’s music.”
Two singles off the album have already started making the rounds among fans. The first is a laid back song called “Far Away,” which Willfowl said is essentially a song that is about daydreaming about things you’d rather be doing than sitting at work. Those vacations often seem so far away, especially when the paychecks we earn are almost immediately taken away by the bills that always seem to loom from week-to-week. Ultimately, the song encourages listeners to find a purpose in their life instead of becoming attached to a boring routine.
The second single, “Helena Street,” also has a message of encouragement to fans. He said unlike most of his other songs, this one is straight rap with no chorus. He also began a clothing line called White Collar Stoner that he sells at the music events he attends.
“White Collar Stoner is defined as people who handle their business like white collar workers but still like to have a good time,” Willfowl said.
To listen to Willfowl’s music, or to follow him on social media, please visit the following: