Soulful, humble and determined; words that spring to mind after interviewing Scottish singer-songwriter Bow Anderson. She is an artist whose ballads have already been hailed by critics, amassed a global audience, whilst gaining support from the likes of Elton John. With an ever-growing fan-base and discography of limitless promise, it would appear that becoming a pop-star was Bow’s destiny.
However, this is far from the truth. Bow’s journey is one of immense sacrifice, heartbreak and agonising set-backs. – At just the tender age of 13, her life flashed before her eyes when training as a trampolinist with Team GB. A freak near-death accident resulted in a long-term injury, where Bow was forced to sacrifice her childhood dream. “I couldn’t walk, couldn’t really do anything for months. I was honestly in such a dark place at the time. It was such a surreal time that really put things into perspective, and I had to grow up very quickly”.
Bow was quick to adapt, wholeheartedly embracing her love of music as her next endeavour. “Whilst I could no longer dance, I still went to performance school. And they encouraged me to sing, so I went for it”. The ability to not only overcome such adversity, but to transform into a positive force of change speaks volumes of not only the wonderfully driven artist, but person Bow is.
The perfect exemplification of her endless ambition was her decision to leave Edinburgh, moving to London at the age of 19 to pursue a dream reborn. It’s a decision Bow believes was crucial for her career, “For me, moving to London is the best thing I ever did. It forced me to overcome my fears, to meet new people and work harder than ever before. I really think being a little bit uncomfortable is actually really healthy.”
Despite plans being put on hold due to lockdown, Bow has once again defiantly overcome another set-back, having had her most successful year during a pandemic. Following on from the success of last year’s ‘I Just Wanna’, her soulful 2021 EP ‘New Wave’ flaunts her truly unique vocals, whilst firmly positioning her as one of the most promising artists around.
The truly inspiring journey of Bow is one that millions of aspiring musicians and individuals can look up to, seeking valuable advice from an artist who’s earnt every part of her success. Her advice? “Go with your gut. What your gut says is probably right, and the second you start thinking about what others think you’ll dilute your creativity. Another one for me is believe in yourself. If you don’t believe in your talent, how are you going to convince someone else to?”
WHAT: Soulful pop at its most emotionally engaging
3 SONGS: ‘Hate That I Fell In Love With You’; ‘Sweater’; ‘Island’
FACT: Bow’s first introduction to 60s soul came from watching Motown-inspired flick Dreamgirls with her family.
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Words: Josh Crowe
Photography: Sophie Mayanne
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