Billy Howerdel Says Jerry Cantrell Encouraged Him To Use His Name In New Solo Record


A Perfect Circle’s Billy Howerdel recently spoke to Heavy Consequence and revealed Jerry Cantrell gave him the encouragement he needed to use his name for his solo effort.

Billy Howerdel rose to prominence as the guitarist, backing vocalist, lyricist, and producer of A Perfect Circle and Ashes Divide. Howerdel recorded four albums with A Perfect Circle and released one album with Ashes Divide titled ‘Keep Telling Myself It’s Alright.’ However, he is also a successful solo artist who now has a new album.

The 2008 album ‘Keep Telling Myself It’s Alright’ was originally a solo effort that featured music material that Howerdel worked on and off before A Perfect Circle’s ‘Thirteenth Step’ was released. During the recordings of A Perfect Circle’s next album ‘Emotive,’ Maynard James Keenan pushed him to sing the lead to get people used to his voice.

Although it was intended as a solo effort, Howerdel released the album with Ashes Divide. In April 2022, the musician announced his debut solo record titled ‘What Normal Was,’ which came out on June 10. When it hit the record stores, this album became the first LP released under Howerdel’s solo name.

Speaking to Heavy Consequence, Billy Howerdel recently talked about this decision. He said that he thought of this record as ‘the next Ashes Divide record,’ but he felt he was moving in a different direction. Howerdel then recalled having a birthday dinner with Jerry Cantrell, Josh Freese, and Greg Puciato and revealed they encouraged him to use his own name for the album.

During the conversation, Billy Howerdel told Consequence the following:

“It was always going to be the next Ashes record, but I did toy with the idea of, ‘Okay, it’s so different, and I kind of feel myself moving in a different direction.’ A year ago, I went out to my birthday dinner with Jerry Cantrell, Josh Freese, and Greg Puciato. We were talking about solo band stuff, and they were just so encouraging on using my name for many reasons.”

You can watch the rest of the interview and listen to Howerdel’s album below.