William Prince | Collective Arts Black Box Sessions

“To me, singing is like catching my breath... It’s like a Woolly mammoth walking through deep snow. That’s the feel of my music. It might be a little cold, but it’s hopefully warm throughout.”

William Prince began his musical journey at the age of nine. Growing up on the Peguis First Nation of Manitoba, his influences included country and folk staples like Johnny Cash, Willie Nelson, and Kris Kristofferson, as well as his preacher and musician father. “My whole life I listened to my dad’s deep voice singing gospel,” says Prince. “In a sense, I make folk-country tunes inside of a gospel framework. It can be really powerful, but it brings a calm.”

In 2014 he made the leap into music full time, forgoing medical school to focus on writing and touring across Canada. He eventually met producer Scott Nolan, and together they recorded Prince’s first album Earthly Days in 2015. The record took off, garnering praise from renowned artists Bruce Cockburn and Neil Young, and earning awards including “Aboriginal Artist of the Year” at the 2016 Western Canadian Music Awards and “Contemporary Roots Album of the Year” at the 2017 Juno Awards.

The inspiration for his debut single “Breathless” comes from unforgettable moments of growing up in Northern Canada: the first time hearing Elvis, sleeping under the Northern Lights, and sound of pouring rain. “These are all memories that took my breath away. I thought of growing up in Northern Canada and all of the moments I still cherish that left me speechless and breathless.”