William Peterson, known as iLLa wiLLa, is a multi-instrumentalist composer of original music from Wilmington, North Carolina. After living in the mountain oasis of Asheville, NC for 7 years, William has performed around the state with many of his projects, and continues to pursue new collaborations whether it be on guitar, vocals, bass, keys, or different types of percussion.
Growing up in a musical environment, William sang in choirs and learned piano with his sister, while his father's business Water Street Restaurant had live music almost every night. There is where his deeply rooted love for music took off. Genres spanning from jazz to bluegrass to eclectic improvisation, William's ear was exposed to a wide range of music at Water Street, and now in his mid 20's, he cherish's the lasting effect those artists had in him.
When William was in 6th grade, his best friend Henry moved from Boston, Massachusetts, and this is when he had his first true collaboration playing in a punk band with Henry and their closest friends Max and Erik. "The Scandals" performed and gained momentum in Wilmington among the punk rock scene, each member falling in love with the energy they felt from creating original music together. William remembers these formative years as the time where he found his inner passion to perform.
It was when Peterson began college at Birmingham-Southern in 2010, that he knew that being a musician was what he would spend the rest of his life doing. "I met so many different types of musicians and their passions at BSC", says Peterson,"and that's when I knew it was time to get busy." After a year in Birmingham, Peterson transfered to UNC Asheville where he began his study in Jazz and Contemporary music focusing in vocals. From there, he performed 5-string bass and vocals with his jazz fusion trio, Triptych Soul, and percussion and vocals in a 7 piece neo-soul funk band named Window Cat.
Now, Peterson collaborates with Ana Carolina Scott in their electronic singer-songwriter duo, TEMPST, while continuing to pursue his solo material, iLLa wiLLa. iLLa wiLLa releaseD his debut single, "New Sense" along with a music video done by Wallaby Media in late September, 2018. This was followed by the release of his debut E.P., self titled "iLLa wiLLa". Peterson believes that the work he has done with producer Peter Brownlee on the debut release will be his best to date. Stay tuned for updates at illawilla.com.