Erin Bowman Mixes Joni Mitchell, Gwen Stefani in “Apartment 101”

Videos by American Songwriter

Videos by American Songwriter

Pissed-off women write great songs—just ask Carrie Underwood, Lily Allen, Pat Benatar, Alanis Morrisette of course, and, just lately, singer-songwriter Erin Bowman.

On Nov. 1, Bowman released her debut EP, “Apartment 101”, following a tour of live performances at indie record stores and radio stations in venues including Long Beach, CA, Boise, ID, Poughkeepsie, NY.

“Women aren’t supposed to express sadness or pain in our culture,” she told American Songwriter. “Well, guess what? I devoted my entire first album to those feelings. It’s where I was at, and I could tell from playing these really emotional songs in small, intimate settings across the country that music-lovers everywhere have been there, too.”

The artist says she has shed several karmic skins since her 2016 hit single, “Good Time Good Life.” 

The bubbly pop dance-cut took her from waitressing at Red Lobster to becoming the voice of an instant musical marketing meme.

The track, released by Kobalt Publishing, made its debut on NBC’s “This is Us”, then opened an episode of CBS’s “Hawaii Five-O”, and was featured in Target’s national television Thanksgiving ad campaign.

Bowman performed the song on ABC’s “Good Morning America”, quickly followed by appearances on “The Radio Disney Music Awards” and “Live with Kelly & Ryan.” The track was also used by ABC to promote the 2017 Oscars ceremony broadcast.

The cover portrait of “Apartment 101” now reveals the 29-year old New Jersey native in a pensive pose. The 8 tracks, produced and mixed by James Giddings and Matt Gallagher, explore spilled milk (there’s a cut by that title), phrases like “I just wanna be okay”, and the need to “stop over-thinking.”

Accompanying herself on guitar, you’ll hear the combined influences of many artists that Bowman loves, including vintage Spice Girls, Black-Eyed Peas, Gwen Stefani, and even a few slides and open-tunings reminiscent of Joni Mitchell’s “Blue.”

Bowman says, “I love Gwen Stefani for her unstoppable energy. She just radiates that fabulous super-power! And I love Joni for saying she’s ‘not just a sad girl’ in interviews.”

She explains that she left a long-term relationship to move to Los Angeles, and then “…fell hard for a guy I shouldn’t have. There was a year of chasing him, then a year of getting over him. That’s what you hear in ‘Apartment 101’.”

She no longer calls Los Angeles home. “As a city, I didn’t feel it, really, other than the great weather, of course.”

She’s off to London after the holidays to begin work on her next, as yet un-named album.

“I was mad at him, mad at myself, and now I’ve processed it,” says the artist. “In musical terms, it feels like this will be my equivalent of ‘Jagged Little Pill’. I’m leaving my regrets on the other side of the Atlantic, and in 2020, it’s all about to get real.”

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