Wade Bowen unleashed a soulful power ballad as he readies his next era of music, sharing a fresh sound while remaining true to his impactful singing and songwriting. The reigning Texas Male Vocalist of the Year kicked off the weekend with “Lovin’ Not Leavin’” on Friday (September 15).
Bowen teamed up with GRAMMY Award-winning songwriter Casey Beathard — whose writing credits include songs by Eric Church, Kenny Chesney and more — to write “Lovin’ Not Leavin.’” Bowen said in a recent interview with iHeartCountry that the single tells the story of a gypsy spirit settling down with the perfect person.
“I'm hangin' in/ I’m holding on/ Ain't no telling where the old me's gone/ With that goodbye on his breath / Just looking for a reason/ To let it go/ Let it fly/ I must've found something I/ Believe in/ Cause I'm lovin' not leavin’”
Bowen said that artists and musicians like himself are “probably not the easiest people to fall in love with and to settle down, and this song is about finding that one that actually makes you change your life and change your thought process and settle down. It’s not easy to make a gypsy spirit slow down. That’s what the song really encompasses, and I’m really glad that my wife actually convinced me, that I fell in love with her and changed the way I think about life in general and settling down. … if roles were reversed I’m not sure I could do it, being married to a gypsy soul like us.”
The Waco, Texas-born singer-songwriter — who also earned the Songwriter of the Year and Single of the Year awards at the T3R Awards earlier this year, said it was a “dream come true” to team up with Beathard to write such a special song. Bowen said of collaborating with songwriters of Beathard’s caliber that it feels, “like I’m still learning as much as I ever have, and I try to keep that mentality and try to still be a sponge and not be stubborn and think I know everything, because I know I do not.
“I feel like I’ve taken all this stuff I’ve done through the years and I feel like I really know what I want now but that doesn’t mean I’m not trying new things, too,” Bowen continued. “I think I have the confidence to know what I want, but also…try new things and have the confidence to do that, as well. ...I feel like it’s the best I’ve ever been, and that feels really good to say. I think it’s coming through in the songs, I think it’s coming through in the live show, I just think it’s coming through in every aspect.”
Bowen, who is also passionate about giving back with family and friends through the Bowen Family Foundation (he credited his parents with instilling a spirit of generosity), is known for career-spanning anthems like “Everything Has Your Memory,” “Songs About Trucks,” “Mood Ring” and others since making his debut in the early 2000s. Now, more than two decades into his career, Bowen is a season singer-songwriter who is still finding ways to push his creative boundaries.
Bowen said he’s always aimed to be an “open-diary” storyteller through his music, and aims to listen to new stories to find inspiration everywhere, rather than just in her personal life. Now that he’s not “going through the trenches of ‘finding myself,’ or any of that crazy stuff that I’ve always written about,” Bowen is focused on the melodies and hooks that inspire new ideas, and pulling from everyday life to create fresh music. He’s getting ready to do that via his next record, which he’s slated to begin before the end of the year to release as early as possible in 2024. Bowen is also keeping a packed touring schedule through the end of the year, with shows in Texas, Kansas, Oklahoma and other destinations coming up.
Bowen said he’s “working harder than I ever have,” and he’s “recording new music as quickly as I can write it.”
Listen to Bowen’s “Lovin' Not Leavin’” here: