If you’ve ever read this blog, you know this is true. As an occasional series, I’d like to spotlight some women who blaze trails for girls like my daughters. It’s a beautiful age we live in. A girl can do anything she sets her mind to.
Leading off is singer/songwriter Erin Bowman. Her song “Keep Me Warm” shot right to my heart, and I sent her a tweet to tell her so. She responded with a thanks, and an idea was born: What if I could interview kick-ass girls like Erin for the CD? Talk with women who do amazing things for a living? They’re the kind of women who create this world in which my oldest daughter not long ago asked:
“There’s really never been a woman president?”
I’m grateful Erin agreed to this interview. I know you’ll love her music as much as I do! And check out her official page at erinbowman.net.
CD: What did you think you’d grow up to be when you were a little girl?
EB: I think there was a point where I thought I would be a professional soccer player. I loved playing soccer as a little girl and into my early teens. I was on a competitive team and I just loved it. I wanted to be and thought I’d be the next Mia Hamm. Me and every other little girl playing soccer in 1999. But I was always singing and I loved that as well. Somewhere along the way my dream of being a soccer player shifted to wanting to be a pop singer. I always felt like if I wanted to be something I could be it. I still feel like that til this day. My 5th grade yearbook says my career goal was to be a singer. I thought I’d grow up to be a successful singer and though I’m far from where I want to be I have had some success and will continue to reach for the stars! If I could, I’d go back and high five my 5th grade self. She was a girl who really knew what she wanted. I like that. 🙂
CD: That’s awesome! Fifth graders are pretty smart. Were there lessons you learned in soccer that have helped you in music?
EB: At the risk of sounding cliche, I think teamwork is something that really helps you in your future. Being a part of a team and learning how to work with other people is really important for your adult life! I know I’m a solo act but there are so many people working on my project behind the scenes. So much work from so many different people goes into a music career. You could never do it alone. It’s important that I know how to work with other people and I think soccer is a huge part of that.
CD: Tell us a bit about the first song you ever wrote.
EB: The first song I had a hand in writing was a song of mine called “Problem.” I knew I wanted to be a singer for a long time but I never really thought I’d write the songs that I’d sing. I started working with a producer right out of high school and I recorded a few songs he had written. Then he had this song that he wasn’t sure about lyrically and asked me to take a stab at it. I rewrote bits of it and he liked them. I’ve been writing ever since. I went from writing words to writing melodies as well. It’s nice to be a cowriter for all the songs I sing now. I feel so connected to them because it’s really coming from me.
CD: What influence has your dad had in your life?
I think it’s really important for parents to believe in their kids and make them feel like they can be anything they want to be, do anything they want to do, etc. It’s important for kids to feel like they make their parents proud. My dad always encouraged me and made me feel good about everything I did growing up. The school play, talent shows, baseball, softball, soccer, and so on. He always made me feel like I could be the best at something if I really put my mind to it. The music business is hard. Really, really hard. If I didn’t have a dad who was always encouraging me I don’t think I’d be able to handle this business. He’s constantly reminding me that it’s hard but I’ll get there. He has my back with everything.
CD: What’s the hardest thing about the music business?
One of the hardest things about the music industry is growing a fan base and getting your music out there and heard. There is so much traffic now that it’s so hard to get noticed by people. There are tons of youtube channels and anyone can sell their music on iTunes. Hoping someone just stumbles upon is a nice thought but it’s not enough. It’s easy to say “oh I’ll just get a record deal,” but that’s not how it works. Record labels don’t sign artists the way they used to. They want you to have a fan base, single sales, radio play, etc. So that’s what I’m working on. I cope by writing more music and working on writing that undeniable hit! I think a true smash could do a lot of the heavy lifting for me. Word spreads fast. I think the right song with those supportive radio stations playing it could really get it going and then hopefully it just snowballs.
CD: “Keep Me Warm” kind of snowballed, didn’t it? You know I love it. Tell us how McDonald’s came to choose it for their ads.
EB: “Keep Me Warm” and the whole McDonalds thing came together so quickly!! It was crazy how it happened. I wrote “Keep Me Warm” with a co-writer, we finished it, recorded the vocals that day, and the next day the song was sent out and McDonald’s said they were interested in using it for their commercial. It was one of those things where all the stars aligned! They were looking for a song that was about staying warm for their White Chocolate hot drink collection and “Keep Me Warm” fit the bill! Because the McDonald’s commercial was such a huge platform for “Keep Me Warm” it made sense to release it, put it on iTunes, and deliver it to radio! Radio programmers knew their audience had probably seen the commercial and heard the song before so it gave them a good reason to play it, which was amazing!! Obviously it’s a seasonal song so at this point “Keep Me Warm” has pretty much run it’s course but there’s always next winter! 🙂
CD: Thanks so much for taking the time for this interview, Erin. I love the example you set for girls like mine to dream big. Is there anything important we should know that I haven’t asked about?
EB: Thanks so much for interviewing me! I really appreciate the support. Also, thank you so much for saying that about me setting an example for your girls. I think it’s important for girls to have people to look up to, get inspired by, and just help push them to be better! If I can do that for even just one girl that’s amazing. I’ve been working on a bunch of new music that I’m super excited about! Very girl power-ish songs! 😉 A new single is on its way so be on the look out! Thanks so much!
Follow Erin at www.erinbowman.net
Also on YouTube
Twitter and Instagram | @erinbowmanmusic