A New Album and Interview with Dan Bowskill
From the soil of Ghana and England grew a young man inspired by the greats such as Aswad, Gregory Isaac and Bob Marley and the Wailers. Thirsty for creation, he followed his calling that made him bloom into the global inspiration he is today. One of the hardest working artists in the industry, all the way from London Town, conscious-provoking lyricist, Roots Reggae is his therapist, Singer Songwriter Dan Bowskill, welcome to Independent Music Guide, sir!
I recently had a chance to talk with Dan. Read below to find out more about this hidden gem.
Tommy: How are you feeling today?
Dan: Hi! I am grateful for the gift of life..feeling blessed.
Tommy: Great to hear! So, I follow you all over social media platforms since I found out about you and you are one busy artist! Thank you so much for taking a moment out of your schedule. Let’s talk about that first, then your EP. But before that. Social media went crazy when you went missing. What happened!? Are you okay?
Dan: Thank you for taking time out of you're schedule to interview me. Yes, I apparently went missing a few years ago, when actually I had a brief stint where I was squatting for about 2 weeks and I was off social media, so family and friends pronounced me missing, even magician Dynamo tweeted that I was missing, nice bit of free press I guess. And yes I can safely say that I am OK.
Tommy: Haha, I'm glad you're well! I understand you did backing vocals for Dido. Is that right? How was that? How was she to work with and where was it?
Dan: I did do backing vocals for Dido, that's right, it was one of those surreal moment's in my life, and Dido was lovely to work with, very unassuming and humble. I recorded the vocals at her brother Rollo Armstrong's studio on Barnsbury Road in
Tommy: So, as I walked my dog in the sunshine this morning through a snowy Forrest I realized I didn't have my phone with me and immediately felt relieved from my self inflicted duties in the rat-race. I thought of the beautiful collaboration with your band CrossFire and the great producer Gil Cang - Walking in the Sunshine - where you sing one line that says: Leaving my phone at home. I think we can all relate to that. As a deep thinker as yourself, how do you detach from your phone and technological distractions in your life?
Dan: Well, some mornings I don't even look at my phone or switch on my computer until I have had a few moments to just be, and become aware of my breath, I find it brings me back to the present moment before any notifications pop up on my smart phone or devices.
Tommy: Back to Gil Cang for a moment. He co-wrote ' Whatever Happen's ' for Michael Jackson, and wrote a song for Amy Winehouse and he 's a heavy hitter in the Reggae world. How has it been to work with him and are you working on future collaborations?
Dan: Working with Gil has been a real honour. He is a talented multi instrumentalist, producer and songwriter. And we both have a mutual admiration for Reggae and music in general. It is also pretty humbling to know that he has been associated with such musical greats. And yes we have been working on new music, so listen out for that.
Tommy: I can’t believe you are guest vocalist with the Dub Pistols! I first heard about them in early 2000 in London when I lived there. How is it to be with such a high energy group?
Dan: It has been an absolute blast being a part of such a high octane band, I was hurled into a whole new universe that seemed to vibrate at such a high and fun loving frequency. There was never a dull moment, and plus It kept me very fit.
Tommy: As a Ska, Rocksteady and Reggae guitarist myself and foremost lover and listener, I thoroughly enjoy listening to your new EP Road Less Traveled. Because I like slow smooth Reggae my favorite one is Hesitate. The song is smooth, the production is flawless and the skank guitar is just sexy good. And well done on all the tracks, as well. Which song on the new EP is your personal favorite and why?
Dan: Thank you. Well, I produced the EP with Russ Disciple aka Russ D, A legendary Dub Sound man and Reggae producer from the UK. And yo u know what, I love all my children the same as it were, but I'd have to say that my favourite song is also Hesitate . It's my favourite because it's exactly the kind of Reggae song I have always wanted to make without sounding narcissistic.
Tommy: Who are some of your favorite influences?
Dan: Well, I grew up listening to groups like Gladys Knight & the Pip's, Isaac Hayes, the Carpenter's, David Bowie, the Beatles, Ras Michael & the sons of Negus, Scientist, Bob Marley & the Wailers, Dennis Brown, Ijahman Levi and even classical music. Too many to mention.
Tommy: Who are currently some of your favorite artists?
Dan: I absolutely love Amy Winehouse, Pharrell Williams, Manic Street Preacher's, Dub FX, Ziggy Marley, Julian Marley, Kiko Bun, Dua Lupa, Devlin.
Tommy: If you would place yourself as an outsider, how would you see and describe yourself as an artist?
Dan: Interesting question. I'd like to think that I come across as authentic, and somewhat socially aware.
Tommy: Similar question but different. How do you want to be seen as an artist?
Dan: I would like to be seen as honest and accessible, inspirational with a positive and motivational message for the world.
Tommy: And thats what the world needs! You have done so many different things in Music from voiceover work for the BBC to performances for 80.000 people. What kind of Music career do you want to have in the future?
Dan: I would be happy to be in a position where I am able travel to as many countries as possible and share this music with people. I want my name to be on peoples lips when they think of Reggae music, becoming a household name is the aim.
Tommy: What’s next on your plate?
Dan: I am recording more music with different producers, and I am planning to start touring this year, and road testing my new EP. Also I will be working with Dub FX this year that will be very exciting. I am also in the middle of writing a book, I wont say too much yet, I will keep you posted.
Tommy: Please, do. To wrap it up, I played your uplifting cover version of Leo Sayer’s You make me feel like dancing on SoundCloud. We turned it up and on a grey day you had my entire family dancing in the living room. My six month old couldn’t stop smiling. We played it once more. You made our and her day. Thank you so very much..
Dan: You are welcome, if my music can make you dance, then I am doing something right I guess. Thank you for sharing the vision.
Tommy: It’s a real pleasure meeting you, following you on social and looking forward to hearing more from you, Dan. Thank you again and cheers mate!
Dan: You're welcome! Before we go, a special thank you to my mum Pamela Bowskill, for all the great music she played in the house growing up. She said whenever she played Reggae that I would kick her in her womb. I had no choice but to like Reggae music, it was all she played, haha! Cheers to you and IMG !