Too often do true and talented artists go unnoticed these days. That’s why The Waking believes so strongly in promoting new and independent musicians. Singer/songwriter Nate Fowler is no exception. Hailing from Boise, Idaho, Nate brings a strong voice and powerful stories to the table through his music. He recently released a new EP, “Wherever You Go,” which is full of pop/rock tunes and hopeful messages. In his interview, we asked Nate about his art, inspirations, and passions.
Q: How long have you been playing music?
I remember always being told to “stop banging on things” as a kid. There was always a song in my head, and I was trying to play it I guess. I’m not sure if I could call it “music”, but I’ve been making noise for as long as I can remember.
Q: Who or what inspires you?
It’s hard to put my finger on a perfect definition of “inspiration”. I guess I’d consider each and every day a piece of inspiration. Every situation, person, ordeal, even the small things that I hardly notice lend to some sort of inspiration of what will come through the song.
Q: Could you tell us about your trips to South America and India? What were those like?
I believe that traveling over-seas was a huge turning point in my life that really helped build a foundation for who I am and how music is meant to be used in my life. We played so many shows. Often times two shows a day. We would also work in food banks, take clothes to the homeless, and spent quite a bit of late nights out just talking with the locals. I was the drummer in both bands on both tours, so towing all my gear around was exhausting. We were up early, going to sleep late and never really got much time to process what we were living through until we got home. We played venues, churches, parks, streets, conferences, and most everywhere else you could think of in between. We all got to witness some amazing things during both of these trips. I truly believe that I had a chance to have a glimpse at the face of God and His great love for people. I’m so blessed to have had those opportunities. I have so many stories about those two trips that I wouldn’t even know where to start. Touring for 2 months in a foreign country with 7 people leads to a lot of stories. 😉
Q: The song “Call Me Family” alludes to the tragedy of human trafficking. Please explain why this issue in particular is so important to you.
Thank you for using “tragedy” to describe trafficking. I believe it deserves that term for sure. If you asked me about trafficking a year ago I wouldn’t know what you’re talking about. I wrote the song “Call Me Family” late at night after playing a show at a documentary preview called, “Call and Response”. This was my first exposure to the concept of human trafficking and it shook my soul. I didn’t even know what words that I wanted to say, but I knew they were there and they needed to come through. I sat quiet. The lamp in the corner was the only light in the room and I was staring at my feet with my chin resting on my guitar. I was seeing the faces of those girls from the documentary running through my mind and I was so moved to take myself out of this song and try and find the voice of her face, the young girl that was held captive in the abuse of trafficking. I simply began to listen to what this girl was saying. What questions would she ask? What does her life and future have? Where is she at? After about an hour the lyrics were done. After the lyrics were on the page I thought about my family, my sisters, my wife, and the feelings associated with even the thought of them having to go through this. Ever since, I’ve tried to partner with organizations like International Justice Mission, Call and Respond, and Full Circle Trade in helping spread the word of social justice throughout the world. This tragedy is so important to me because it isn’t just a problem that “Christians” see, we as a people can all partner on this foundation. Slave trafficking is a human injustice and if we put all sexes, religions, creeds, and nationalities aside we’re still left with a crime that we can all agree is an injustice against fellow humanity as a whole.
Q: What was the recording process like for your new album, “Wherever You Go?”
It was kind of like craving a steak and fine wine from a 5 star restaurant with a budget for a double cheese burger from McDonald’s. Don’t get me wrong, I’m proud of this new album and I truly believe in every song that was recorded, but like every musician I wish there were things that I could have done. I was blessed to be surrounded with such great musicians and musical knowledge. We spent a fair amount of time pre-producing the songs so when we went in to the studio we tracked most all of it in one day. We took some time going back through the songs, cleaning up some areas, and I did all the vocals and guitars and that was it. That’s all I could afford. 😉
Q: What would you like to accomplish with your art?
If people can connect with what these songs are saying, I consider that an accomplishment. If they love the song and feel they relate with the message, everything else will fall into place after that.
Q: Why is art so important?
I believe that music is what feelings sound like and pictures are the vision of the soul. The way that we express ourselves artistically is the voice that God has put deep within our hearts. So many people think they are not creative or artistic, but I disagree. We all have an inner voice, but like our physical voices, they all sound different. That’s the beauty of creating your art.
Q: What is your advice to aspiring musicians?
Find what your voice wants to say, and say it. Focus on what it’s saying and don’t try and make it sound like something it’s not.
Q: What is one album, movie, or book that everyone should own?
Oh, man. There are so many answers to this question. I think everyone should own a copy of “Blue Like Jazz” by Don Miller. Hilarious. As far as music, wow, there is so much. I would have to say James Taylor 1993 “Best Live”.
Please support this up-and-coming artist by purchasing his new EP, “Wherever You Go” on iTunes or Amazon.com. Also, visit Nate’s website here!