Seán McGowan is an acoustic singer-songwriter from Southampton who started gigging in late 2010 with Dean Paul accompanying him on acoustic guitar. Within a year of their first show they found themselves supporting Shed Seven, were made Unsigned Artist of The Week by Absolute Radio and had topped the Strummerville DIY chart for most of the year.
Billy Bragg tipped Seán as 'One to Watch for 2013' in his John Peel lecture that was broadcast worldwide by the BBC, and tracks from Seán's 'People's Music' EP have been receiving more and more airtime on radio stations around the UK.
Seán, who is still just 20 years old, has regularly been playing to sold out crowds in his hometown as well as gigging with the likes of Billy Bragg, Frank Turner, Reverend & The Makers and Beans on Toast. Sam Duckworth (Get Cape. Wear Cape. Fly) also recently invited Seán along to the studio to record some vocals for Sam's forthcoming album.
Seán is certainly one to watch for 2014, with a number of festival dates ahead of him, and no doubt a lengthening queue of high profile supporters of his music. He will perform at Dot to Dot Festival 2014.
How would you describe your sound?
My sound is kind of like what you would get if you were to put Billy Bragg, Joe Strummer, The Pogues, Shirley High Street (Southampton) and some BBQ sauce in a blender. I think.
What's been the best show you've played recently?
The best show I've played recently was supporting Billy Bragg at the Brighton Dome as part of The Great Escape Festival. It was my lifetime ambition to support Mr. Bragg, it was an incredible evening. He also gave me a bottle of Jamesons. Free whiskey always makes things better.
What would you say are your influences?
I'm heavily influenced by my friends and family. I know it's quite obvious to say but my biggest influence is my observations. I call it how I see it.
What's the music scene in Southampton like, and would you say you're influenced by any subcultures?
The scene down here is wicked. Arguably the best it's ever been. Southampton Joiners (where I work) has just been voted 'NME best small British venue' - which is thoroughly deserved. The city is buzzing with new music at the minute. Massively influenced by Punk. Also quite into the Mod scene.
Who is your biggest style Icon?
Would probably be Strummer, he made statements. He was always recognisable.
What album do you find yourself listening to the most?
In the last month it would be Frank Turner - Tape Deck Heart.
If you could have any artist, dead of alive, cover you, who would it be?
Tough one. Joe Strummer would be my usual answer but that's too obvious. So I'll say Kylie Minogue.