CoM&L - episode 6 with Tim Bowman
Detroit native Tim Bowman got around to serenading his hometown recently. “Detroit Funk,” a percussive instrumental tune on Bowman’s album Into the Blue, feels like the theme song for the best Motor City-set TV series never made. The guitarist’s own early days in Motown had a more sedate (and sacred-sounding) soundtrack. At age 11 Bowman began playing his instrument in church. He also sang in the International Gospel Center’s choir. Later, he and his sister Vickie both performed in an IGC ensemble called International Sounds of Deliverance. She married a member of the singing Winans family in 1978, and eventually the eponymous gospel group extended an invitation to her brother. Bowman played with the Winans briefly and served as the band’s musical director before embarking upon a solo career in the late 1980s.
Love, Joy, Peace—Bowman’s debut solo album—arrived in 1996 and sold briskly. Paradise and Smile followed in 1998 and 2000, respectively. “Summer Groove,” the first track on 2004’s This Is What I Hear, became Bowman’s first number-one record. By 2007 he was touring with Kirk Whalum, Jeff Golub, and Gerald Albright. In 2008 he released a self-titled album that had another echo-like aspect to it: Among his collaborators on the recording was Tim Bowman Jr. Tim Bowman became the senior Bowman’s breakthrough record, reaching number 15 on the Contemporary Jazz Albums chart. His fourth number-one song, “Seaside Drive,” appeared in 2013. It’s among the 15 cuts on the aforementioned Into the Blue. On his website Bowman states, about his own work, “I’ve always tried to make music that people could get lost in….”
Hear him in this week’s episode of ‘Conversations on Music & Life” Saturday morning, starting at 11a EDT/10a CDT/8a PDT. Click here to listen the stream.
—Edward Austin Hall