Hi, I’m Michael Guy Bowman. I’m a songwriter, composer, producer, and generally just a person who loves music. I’ve been spooking around the Internet since I got a major break doing soundtrack work for Homestuck in 2009, and I’ve been doing my own songs as Bowman since 2012. I’m also interested in comedy, filmmaking, and a whole bunch of other stuff too.
The Long Story
Before I started releasing music, I was mainly interested in comedy. I took my first improv class in middle school with my friend Scott Stutzman. During high school, my friends Richard Gung, Tavia Morra, and Ed Lie took an interest in early YouTube and semi-seriously attempted to form a video sketch group called “Team Unicorn.” This plan did not work, though we did record my “Bowman’s Credit Score” speech around that time, which I guess is my most enduring work from that era.
While studying percussion, I discovered FL Studio and took an interest in music production. I made my first attempts at songwriting in high school when I borrowed Scott’s baritone ukulele so we could jam and write novelty songs. I still play it and refuse to return it.
In college, Richard introduced me to MS Paint Adventures, a series of interactive web comics written and illustrated by Andrew Hussie. When Hussie announced his new project Homestuck in 2009, which would include a soundtrack written by his readers, I immediately responded to his open call for musicians. I got an early foothold in the project writing tracks like “Sburban Jungle“, “Chorale For Jaspers“, “Pony Chorale“, and had probably my biggest glory moment with a cover of Diane Warren’s ballad from Con Air “How Do I Live?“, the inclusion of which resulted in a lot of people singing it loudly at Andrew at anime conventions across the country. I do not think he has forgiven me or himself for this.
I wrote a few comics in college including “Raj and Boris” for The Daily Texan and the photo comic “Take My Life In A Completely Different Direction”, which owed its style to MS Paint Adventures and had a cult of its own on the now-defunct MSPA Forums. This is where a few people first saw my head and face.
In 2011, I created the album Mobius Trip And Hadron Kaleido for the Homestuck soundtrack, a Gorillaz-esque virtual band effort which debuted my first serious recorded songs. I briefly lived in Los Angeles and began crashing MSPA fan events regularly with my guitar.
The Homestuck fanbase was as enormous as it was ironic, regularly filling anime conventions to sing loudly, host panels, and paint their bodies gray. They were like Vaporwave juggalos, man; it was crazy. I got my face further out into the community with a few hoax videos, including “radiation is now on youtube” and “End of Act 5 Preview.” These were the foundation for my YouTube channel.
In 2012 I was invited to play a showcase of my songs at the SXSW festival in Austin. I debuted my own independently-released solo album as Bowman, Ithaca, and assembled a band which included fellow Homestuck music collaborators Marcy Nabors, Clark Powell, Erik Scheele, and Riki Tsuji. We played a few gigs around Texas that year and streamed a few concerts and rehearsals online. Loud renditions of “How Do I Live” in the halls of Otakon in Baltimore, Maryland probably scared every parent and older sibling who had to chaperone the near-riot.
I’ve written several more solo albums as Bowman, including the baroque pop-ish Comfortable Bugs (2012), the new wave-esque Hush (2015), the outtake compilation-like Archive (2016), and the classic rock-y Electric Daydreams (2016). My plan is to have every album title start with each successive letter of my name: “Michael Guy Bowman.” This will take the rest of my life.
I studied improv at the Hideout Theatre in Austin, Texas, where I must insist that I was THE biggest fan of Parallelogramophonograph, who are great. I made a lot of comedy videos for YouTube, including some collaborations with Scott, which are my favorite things ever (“Texas History“, “Good Cop, Red Cop“, “Backyard Fun“, etc). I moved back to Los Angeles in 2014, where I’ve studied comedy primarily at the The Pack Theater. I’m currently a member of a sketch team called Patsy – we perform shows every second Sunday of the month.
My latest single is called “This Is As Good As It Gets“, though I assure you, it’s going to get even better.
If you like me and what I do, you should follow all of my ridiculously self-serving social media: Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, Facebook, Bandcamp, Spotify, blah blah blah. Some fans have also created a Discord channel if you want to have a chat with other people as crazy as you are. Maybe even check out Bowmania, a truly bizarre remix album that was created by the Cool and New Music Team in 2017.