Singer-songwriter Will Overman has caught the attention of music fans with his genre-bending storytelling & raw vocal talent, which has accumulated over 100,000 streams on Spotify alone.
Will has now released his debut solo LP ‘The Winemaker’s Daughter‘ that was written over a period of more than 5 years & features a variety of raw-emotive tracks related to the journey that has led him to become the person he is today.
Now Will has kindly taken the time to speak with Fierce & Fabulous Revolution about his latest release. Find out what he said below.
Hey Will, thank you so much for agreeing to this interview. Can you start by telling the readers a little bit about yourself?
Will: Sure! I am 27 years old and live with my wife, Janey, and my dog, Tully, in Charlottesville, Virginia. I’m a professional singer-songwriter and when I’m not playing music I’m taking photos.
When did you first discover your passion for music?
Will: When I was pretty young. I was lucky enough to grow up with two parents who loved music. They started me early on The Rolling Stones, The Beatles, a lot of classic rock. They were huge fans of The Grateful Dead as well and my dad, in particular, had an affinity for bluegrass and mountain music. So I had a nice, wide variety of influences.
As far as actually playing music, I began with piano when I was about eight but because I was a little brat I decided to quit playing (wish to god I hadn’t). A few years later when my dad turned 40, he and I decided to learn an instrument together: he the guitar and I the cello. I played cello in the school orchestra for about 10 years but I never really loved it. So I started to pick up the mandolin, hacked at that for a few years, then ultimately found the acoustic guitar. I’d been singing with my dad for a while, so once I was able to play rhythm focused instruments it opened up a new world of singing, and eventually, to songwriting.
Have you always known that music was a career that you wanted to pursue?
Will: Pretty much. I went through the typical astronaut and archeologist phases when I was really little, but ever since I was 15 or so I knew I wanted to make a life in music. I’ve certainly had my doubts over the years but even if I wanted to call it quits, I don’t think I could, creating is just part of who I am.
How would you describe your musical style to someone unfamiliar with your music?
Will: Good question. There was a time when I’d have called my music strictly Americana, but with my new record “The Winemaker’s Daughter” I’ve definitely push that envelope. My music certainly falls under a rootsy umbrella, but it also contains elements of pop. I guess the easiest way of saying it is, I am a singer-songwriter who grew up on Americana but have no intention of being defined solely by that genre. I love lyrics, I love melody, and I love music that feels real and I’d like to think my music checks those boxes.
You have just released your debut-solo LP ‘The Winemaker’s Daughter’. How did the idea to create this LP come together?
Will: I didn’t have this LP in mind when I wrote the bulk of the songs on this record, most of them just happened when they happened. But when I went into the studio in the summer of 2019, it was very apparent that of all the songs I’ve written, these specific ones needed to live together, because, for the most part, they are all about my relationship with my wife. So with seven of the nine songs written, and the overall concept slowly taking shape, I knew for the last two songs I’d want to write even closer towards the concept and so I wrote “Little Things” and “The Winemaker’s Daughter” to finish up the album.
As far as the album title, I gotta say, I’m quite fond of it. I’ve always loved the term “The Winemaker’s Daughter” but not until well into this project did I realize it would be the perfect name for this record. You see, my wife is a literal winemaker’s daughter. Her dad, Lew, used to grow wine on their vineyard in Virginia. So I was always attached to the title and I’m just thankful I got to use it for something that is as near and dear to me as this record; I feel like the record serves the title well, and the title serves the record well.
What are some of your favourites songs to feature on the LP?
Will: “Bad Apartment” is one of the oldest songs on the record and it is definitely one of my favorites. It’s about my wife and I’s time in our early twenties living in a crappy apartment, going to school, working multiple jobs, and touring on the weekends. We were flying, we were so busy, we were broke, we had no idea what we were doing, but it’s a time I look back on with nothing but fondness and I think I captured that feeling pretty well.
I also love “Traveler’s Promise”. I never thought I’d have a Texas dancehall style waltz on one of my records, but low and behold I was wrong. Not only do I love the production on this one, I also love the lyrics. I started writing this song in Athens, Greece when my wife and I were traveling. We were in the middle of a six month long journey across Europe working in various locations and traveling between. We’d met all kinds of incredible folks, seen things I couldn’t believe, and I’d been able to do all of it with my favorite person. It was unreal. So this song not only captures how I felt on that journey traveling alongside my wife, it’s also an oath to remember those types of things when I have to travel without her.
What does this LP personally mean to you?
Will: Oh boy, quite a bit. “The Winemaker’s Daughter” is a love letter to my wife and a scrapbook of the memories that make up our relationship. Janey is my muse, she always has been, so it’s been special to dedicate my heart and efforts to something that is so plainly for her. But I also hope that people can insert themselves into this record. The songs as I wrote them are about my wife and our relationship, but the songs as the listener hears them can be about whoever they want them to be about. We are all either in a relationship or have been in one, and for that reason, I think everyone out there can identify with some aspect of this record.
If listeners could take anything away from this LP, what would you like it to be?
Will: You know, I’d like for them to take away whatever they need to take away. There are a lot of highs and lows in this record. There are songs about young, wild love, then there are songs about my wife getting cancer and a friend’s struggle with alcohol. It’s real. “The Winemaker’s Daughter” is a story about two people and the things we’ve experienced. I hope people can find comfort in these songs and ultimately, I’d like to think they can find hope and a sense of perseverance.
What are some of the things you enjoy outside of music?
Will: I am an amateur photographer. If I’m not holding a guitar I’m probably holding a camera. I really fell in love with photography when my wife and I were in Europe and I haven’t fallen out of love since. I’m also an outdoorsman. I’ve been an avid backpacker and hiker since I was a kid and just recently over quarantine I got into fly fishing (I’m terrible, please help).
If you could perform a duet with anyone in the world, who would you choose & why?
Will: Hmmmmm, that’s tough. I think either Kacey Musgraves, Phoebe Bridgers, or Brandi Carlile. I’ve always loved my voice alongside a female’s and those two are just killing it on all levels. I think if I was feeling spunky and light-hearted I’d go for Kacey, if I was feeling spooky and wordy I’d go for Phoebe, and if I wanted to lay down a straight up power ballad and make people cry I’d go for Brandi.
What advice would you offer to someone looking to pursue a career within the music industry?
Will: Prepare to work. This industry is 10% glamour and fun stuff, 90% what you don’t see on stage. I don’t say this in a pessimistic way whatsoever, it’s just my realistic take on things. As a touring musician it’s a whole lot of hurrying up to wait. It’s interviews, it’s merch inventory, it’s taxes, it’s changing tires, it’s band practice, it’s making charts, it’s posting on social media… then after alllll that, you get to walk on stage and perform, or walk into a studio and record. It’s the hard, inglorious, back of house work that makes the fun stuff possible. Just be real about it, it’s hard work, but if you love it, it’ll be worth it.
Finally, is there a message that you would like to share with the readers of Fierce & Fabulous Revolution?
Will: If you love music, and I’m assuming you do because you’re here reading this interview, then make sure to reach out to any musician you know and tell them how much you appreciate their art. I know it seems silly, but without live shows these days, musicians are left to seek validation through Spotify numbers and Instagram likes. It’s a dark place without a lot of reward. We work to have our efforts validated on stage, with people singing along as the payoff We don’t have that now, so it’s really easy to get down. So yeah, just keep supporting the arts in any way you can, buy merch, watch a livestream every now and then even though we are all sick of them, and most importantly, just tell a musician how much you appreciate their work.
You can check out the full LP on Spotify below or purchase on iTunes here.