Who is Mcgowan?
It’s a question he gets a lot.
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Mcgowan Southworth is an award-winning songwriter, artist and musician based in Brooklyn, NY. His latest album American Regular (released on November 10th) is a mix of varied rock influences – touching on elements of power-pop masters like Big Star, Brendan Benson, and Fountains Of Wayne blended with the early rock of Elvis Costello and Neil Young.
Mcgowan’s musical prowess has been utilized by many musicians over the years. When he’s not making solo albums, he’s in the studio twisting knobs with top producers (who’ve worked with the likes of John Legend and Lenny Kravitz), travelling down-under and writing songs for BMG Australian acts like Operator Please, Renee Cassar, The Cassette Kids, Old Man River, and Matt Corby. Mcgowan’s talent even caught the ear of Aussie musician. Ben Lee brought in Mcgowan as the co-writer for his album Awake Is The New Sleep, netting him songwriting awards at the Australian Grammys.
His solo music has been described as, “mass-appealing rock with sunny, 60‘s – influenced choruses and a lyric base that points to conscious songwriting” (Rob Dreija, Audiotier.com). As Mcgowan puts it, “I wasn’t trying to reflect any generation. More where I came from, and the present state of things – but most of all trying to make a fun, raw, rockin’ record.”
To record American Regular, Mcgowan enlisted the help of friends Pete Donnelly (Bassist – Figgs, Graham Parker), Henry Hirsch (legendary engineer for Lenny Kravitz), Dave Tozer (Songwriter/Producer – John Legend), and Jason Molina (Drummer – Longwave) to round out a band. The album works off a driving backbeat – playing the raw emotions of “Girl, Girl, Girl, You’re Making Me Nervous” and “Daddy’s Gonna Ring My Bell” to broader themes of American mythology on songs like “Go Down Fighting”, “The Comeback Kid”, and “On the Other Side”. Mcgowan is quick to point out that these themes are not just American – “you see these attitudes all over the world – but that irony was sort of the point – we are all the same in so many ways.”
The result is a twenty-eight minute blast of power pop at its finest. He’s Mcgowan, and he’s going down fighting.