Joe Alwyn reveals why he chose William Bowery as his songwriter pseudonym

Nils Sjoberg and William Bowery...the ultimate power couple


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Taylor Swift famously used the pseudonym Nils Sjoberg, when working on the song, This Is What You Came For by Calvin Harris and Rihanna. But Miss Swift isn’t the only one with an alter ego, as her beau Joe Alwyn also used a fake name.

Back in 2020, when Taylor’s Folklore and Evermore albums were released, fans discoverd there was a writer they’d never heard of before on the albums, William Bowery, and were very curious about his identity.

They finally got an answer during Taylor’s Folklore: The Long Pond Studio Sessions, where William was revealed to be none other than Joe, but fans still had a question left; how did he pick the name? But now Joe is revealing the meaning behind his pseudonym, explaining it has a family connection on The Kelly Clarkson Show.

Confessing; “It was a combination of William, my great-grandfather – who I actually never met – (who) was a composer. He wrote a lot of classical music and he wrote a lot of film scores.”

“And then Bowery is the area in New York that I spent a lot of time in when I first went over there. So, stick ’em together.'”

Joking the name sounds “very fancy,” he thinks it, “sounds like a kind of like an Agatha Christie character should be wearing a monocle, with a big mustache.”

The actor also explained why he and Taylor used a pseudonym, revealing they wanted people to focus on the music, as opposed to their relationship.

As he confessed; “we chose to do it so that people, first and foremost, would listen to the music first before dissecting the fact that we did it together.”

While the couple are normally quite private, Joe has been opening up about working on music with Taylor a lot recently. In fact, just last month he spoke to The Guardian about how relaxed their songwriting process was.

Saying, “It wasn’t like, ‘It’s five o’clock, it’s time to try and write a song together.”

“It came about from messing around on a piano, and singing badly, then being overheard, and being, like, ‘Let’s see what happens if we get to the end of it together.’”

And while most of us would find writing music with the master that is Taylor Swift a little nerve wracking, Joe really enjoyed the experience as it was more of a lockdown hobby than a business venture.

As he explained, “I mean fun is such a stupid word, but it was a lot of fun. And it was never a work thing, or a ‘Let’s try and do this because we’re going to put this out’ thing. It was just like baking sourdough in lockdown.”


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