NEW SINGLE : Big Scottish release #2: Calum Bowie debut EMI single We Are The River

“We Are The River”

2nd February 2024, EMI


Calum Bowie, the fast-rising 22-year-old Scottish singer, releases his new single ‘We Are The River’ on 2nd February and it’s a powerful statement of intent as he joins his new label home EMI Records. The song is a universal rush of nostalgia and optimism which makes Calum’s song-writing talent abundantly clear and, handily, serves as an evocative metaphor for his own career in music so far.

Like every artist who swims beyond the shallows of learning covers, wades deeper into their own songs and immerses themselves in playing live, he can tell you the moment that changed the meandering current of his normal life into a thrill ride across the rapids.

Calum had fallen in love with music at eight years old, when his dad challenged him to learn ‘Breakfast At Tiffany’s’ on guitar to show he was into it enough to buy him one of his own. He was, of course, and began learning his favourites insatiably, always putting his unique spin on them. He progressed quickly to writing his own songs, releasing them independently during his time at university, with a loyal fanbase coming to see his early live gigs.

Then one day in early 2021, while beached at home like everyone else, the moment came. With gigs still shut down and not much else to do, on the advice of his sister he’d recently signed up to “that new TikTok thing.” He’d posted a few videos performing his favourite covers and some of his own material, with no agenda other than to keep playing music for any kind of audience. Deciding to try and catch that day’s pleasing natural light, he leant out the open window of his Edinburgh student flat, phone perched precariously on the sill and started to sing.

I had no idea how TikTok works and I still don’t really know why it happened,” says Calum, “but as soon as I started posting videos at the window so many more people started watching and reacting to them. I’d get someone walking by and making a request or the tourist throwing me a euro in return for a song, and those videos got even more views. So I just kept going and it gradually became a thing people recognised me for. Then it all went mad when the Kooks shared a video of me doing Naïve.

There may of course be the tiniest possibility that his new-found legion of fans connected with this charismatic, talented young singer who was clearly having a lot of fun on his window-ledge stage, with a natural confidence born of years of practice.

Like all the best pop music, ‘We Are The River’ is smart and direct, hooky and meaningful, inclusive and personal. The inspirational lessons learned from all those hit covers fuse with Calum’s soulful voice and distinctive lyrical take on a theme that touches everyone – the river of time carrying us all further from the halcyon days of childhood towards the new experiences that lie ahead: “How late could I stay up, How far could I skip a stone” but “I won’t swim against the rising of the tide.

I absolutely loved writing this song,” Calum adds. “I remember the idea first clicking when I went home for a few days. I love the idea of looking at the same river and at first thinking nothing has changed but later realising it has never been the same body of water that you remember. The constant flow is inevitable, as is the passing of time.

‘We Are The River’ became an instant communal singalong on Calum’s recent headline UK dates. You can see him live at London’s Lafayette on Friday 8th March – Remaining tickets available here. He also supports Dylan Gossett at Dublin Whelans (26th Feb) and London Tabernacle (28th Feb).

Calum Bowie’s musical river is high and moving fast but don’t worry, he’s a very strong swimmer.

His summer job while at university?


Calum Bowie info:

Calum Bowie was born in Banchory, Aberdeenshire and is based in Edinburgh. Taking inspiration from the likes of Sam Fender, Alfie Templeman and Maisie Peters, Calum is renowned for his charismatic on-stage presence and the energy he brings to his live shows, where audiences sing every song back word-for-word.

In 2023 he played sold-out gigs across the UK and Ireland plus triumphant slots at The Great Escape, TRNSMT, Kendal Calling and Y Not festivals.

His social media presence is ever growing, with 450K+ followers on TikTok, and 160K+ on Instagram. His videos have been viewed over 60M+ times so far. Since teasing ‘We Are The River’, Calum has gained 25,000 followers across platforms

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