Joe Alvin reveals the meaning of the nickname in the album Taylor Swift – NBC10 Philadelphia
Joe Alvin is part of the creative team that is creating Taylor Swift’s 2020 albums “Folklore” and “Eternal” – but many fans may not have realized he was involved.
In “Folklore” he co-wrote “Exile” and “Betty”, and in his next album Swift’s “Evermore” he is credited with being one of the authors of “Coney Island”, “Champagne Problems”, and “Forever”.
However, when the albums came out, Alvin did not use his real name in the captions, instead using the pseudonym William Bowery.
During the appearance on “The Kelly Clarkson Show“- Alvin explained why he decided to take a fake name.
“We decided to do it so that people would listen to the music first and then look at the fact that we did it together,” Alvin said.
Alvin noted that he did not choose the name of William Bower out of thin air: behind the pseudonym is of particular importance.
“It was a combination of William, my great-grandfather, whom I never met, (who) was a composer,” Alvin said. “He wrote a lot of classical music and a lot of scores for films. And then Bowers is a district of New York where I spent a lot of time when I first came there.”
“I like it,” Clarkson replied.
At one point, she joked that the name sounded “very elegant,” and Alvin laughed that William Bowery sounds like “some character of Agatha Christie who has to wear a monocle with a big mustache.”
The 32-year-old Swift did not disclose that 31-year-old Alvin was in fact the author of the mystery until she talked about the album with some of its creators in her November 2020 documentary “Folklore: Long Studio Sessions in the Pond.”
“There was a lot of discussion about William Bower and his identity because … he’s not a real person,” she said at the time. E! News.
“So William Bowery is Joe,” Swift added.
Alvin also talked about his work on the album during a May interview with GQ and he recalled how it was to create the melody and the first verse of “Exile”, which is one of the most popular tracks of “Folklore”.
“It was really the most accidental thing that happened in a closed mode,” he said. – It was wrong: “Third hour, time to write a song!” It was just messing around on the piano and singing badly, and we were overheard and then thought, “What if we try to get to the end together?”
Alvin couldn’t believe it when his recordings turned out to be produced by Aaron Desner of The National and Justin Vernon, frontman of indie-folk band Bon Iver, agreed to vocals.
“It was surreal to send it to Justin with the idea of doing a duet and getting back vocal recordings of how he sings and stuff,” Alvin said. “It was the advantage of blocking.”
Although he has no plans to write more music, he said it was “fun” for a while to be William Bowery and create that music with Swift.
“I was proud of it. It was nice to receive such a positive reception,” he said.
Thanks to his work on “Folklore” Alvin received a “Grammy” as a co-producer of the album, which became the “Album of the Year” at the “Grammy” in 2021.
This story first appeared on TODAY.com. Since TODAY: