Billy Corgan's Solo Album Features Both James Iha and a David Bowie Tribute

BY Calum SlingerlandPublished Sep 22, 2017

Last year, Billy Corgan made the surprise move of reuniting with his former Smashing Pumpkins bandmate James Iha during a Los Angeles tour stop, marking their first time playing together since 2000. Now it's been revealed that Corgan's forthcoming solo LP as William Patrick Corgan, Ogilala, features an appearance from Iha.

As Rolling Stone reports, Iha plays guitar on an album track titled "The Processional," making it his first song alongside Corgan since the Pumpkins released Machina II/The Friends & Enemies of Modern Music in 2000. Iha also apparently recorded another non-album song with Corgan during the sessions.

"I sent him some [songs] and said to him, 'I feel like this is right up your alley' as far as the kind of music he likes to work on," Corgan told the publication. "He picked out two songs, though one will likely be a B-side."

Rolling Stone also notes that Corgan had repaired his relationship with former Pumpkins bassist D'arcy Wretzky. "We reconnected, I guess, about a year and half ago," Corgan said. "We talk really regularly. I'm really happy to have her back in my life." Of course, Pumpkins drummer Jimmy Chamberlin rejoined the group in 2015.

Along with that bit of news, Corgan said the album opens with a tribute to the late David Bowie called "Zowie."

"It was written around the time that David had passed and I was thinking about him a lot […] I was lucky that I got to work with him a little bit. I was really struck by his passing. You almost have to take a step back and be like, 'Okay, that's the end of a journey. What does it mean? How do we evaluate this artist now that there's no more?' It sort of closes the circle."

If you've been wondering why why Ogilala is being billed as a record by "William Patrick Corgan" as opposed to his usual shorthand, he explained that too.

"At some point, 'Billy' just gets kind of weird," Corgan said. "First of all, I'm 50 years old. In my youth I was always 'Bill' or 'Little Bill' because my dad was Billy. Then I turned 18 and was like, 'I'm gonna be Billy because I never liked being called Bill.' But nobody ever called me by my real name, which is William, which I actually prefer. I was obviously Billy in the band, but now I feel like that is somebody else. It's hard to explain other than it's like sometimes you just want to change up the wallpaper."

Ogilala will arrive October 13 via BMG alongside a companion short film titled Pillbox. Corgan has also mapped out a tour in support of the record, which you can find further details on here.

Pick up Smashing Pumpkins' Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness deluxe 4LP box set via MusicVaultz.

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