Clare Bowen and Brandon Robert Young are set to release their debut BOWEN * YOUNG album early next year.
It was serendipity that brought the electric duo BOWEN * YOUNG together in 2013 when Brandon Robert Young was a last-minute replacement for Clare Bowen’s no-show duet partner for her first solo set at Nashville’s Bridgestone Arena. Immediately discovering their wonderful chemistry together, both onstage and off, Brandon proposed to Clare at the Ryman Auditorium during the couple’s Grand Ole Opry set in 2015. They were married by John Carter Cash at the Cash Cabin in 2017. “The first tour we went out on as BOWEN * YOUNG was my favorite tour ever. Since meeting Brandon, my ultimate musical goal had been for he and I to be a duo…” remembers Clare. “I was standing in the wings, waiting to go out for our first show in 2021, when I realized that for the very first time, I was about to walk onstage without the loneliness I had felt for so long, center stage by myself. Everything finally felt right. The spotlight can be such fun, but nothing beats standing in it with the love of my life.”
And now, after Clare’s time spent playing Scarlett O’Conner on the popular show Nashville, performing off-screen with artists such as Vince Gill, Zac Brown Band, and working alongside Grammy Award-winning producers/songwriters T-Bone Burnett and Buddy Miller—and Brandon’s decade of touring with Americana legend John Hiatt and collaborations with Grammy Award-winning artists Emmylou Harris, Colin Linden, and Mikky Ekko—BOWEN * YOUNG are set to release their debut album in early 2023.
Last week, the duo shared their first taste of what’s to come with the dark, mid-tempo rocker, “Skeletons.” Written by Clare, Brandon, and their dear friend Amie Miriello—who they met while opening for award-winning country duo Sugarland on their “Still The Same” tour—and produced by Americana songwriter and producer Sean McConnell, “Skeletons” began as a single line from Miriello: “your skeletons don’t scare me.” “We instantly loved it because it spoke to us on such a personal level, and we knew it would speak to so many other people for a myriad of reasons,” remembers Bowen. “We knew we had to write it.”
In a sea of reverbed-out guitars and a steady backbeat, Clare’s first verse vocals set the stage: “Let’s unpack that dark suitcase / Full of what you wish you could erase.” A personal challenge to a partner to be open and free of whatever past ghosts haunt them, the chorus of “Skeletons” brings the idea home: “You say I outta run / So why don’t you go on / Go on and dare me / Your skeletons don’t scare me.” “We all have our own version of the past—heartbreak and demons,” says Brandon. “When you find your person, you love them for all of who they are.”
Last week, Taste of Country premiered “Skeletons” and sat down with the duo to talk about the inspiration behind the song. Fans can stream or purchase “Skeletons” now at this link and stay tuned to BOWEN * YOUNG social media pages for info on the upcoming album.
If you’re attending AMERICANAFEST this week, don’t miss Brandon Young’s panel discussion on September 15th entitled “Music and the Mind: Musicians and Mental Health Post Pandemic.”
More About BOWEN * YOUNG: Bowen Young’s timeless debut record created by Clare Bowen and husband Brandon Robert Young is a multi-sensory feast. The music, produced by Sean McConnell, invokes themes painted by the duo’s powerfully authentic lyrics and hypnotic harmonies.
Clare, the charismatic actress who played Scarlett O’Connor in the popular show Nashville, is known as a ray of sunshine around the world. She is an empath who leads with her heart, able to communicate and translate emotions whether on stage or screen. Born in rural Australia, she moved to Music City in 2012 for the Nashvillerole and immediately earned respect from the city’s musical leaders. She has performed with artists such as Vince Gill, Zac Brown Band, working with Grammy Award-winning producers/songwriters T-Bone Burnett, Colin Linden, and Buddy Miller, who became her mentors.
She toured her eponymous album for sold-out crowds with Brandon in Germany, Australia, the US, and UK. The pair also earned a coveted spot on Sugarland’s popular “Still the Same Tour” and toured live with the Nashville cast, selling out London’s O2 Arena. Brandon, who began singing at age five under the gentle guidance of his mother, had a very different upbringing and path to Nashville. In 2000, he moved from Enfield, CT, to Nashville, where he taught himself to play guitar. He worked as a courier during the day and spent his nights filling empty composition books with song after song. He spent a decade touring with music legend John Hiatt, first as percussionist and background vocalist and eventually becoming one-third of The John Hiatt Trio. He worked on three of the famed artist’s albums, the last of which was nominated for a Grammy in the Americana category.
Brandon has collaborated with Grammy Award-winning artists Emmylou Harris, Colin Linden, and Mikky Ekko. Young was also invited by John Carter Cash to finish one of his father’s unpublished works for Johnny Cash Forever Words. Brandon’s music has been heard in shows such as Shameless, A Million Little Things, and Nashville.