The ‘in your face singer’ knows how to work the stage of life in music
He may seem like a quiet, reserved man when he is not performing (I would say when he is off stage but when he performs its more often than not that he is most likely off the stage during concerts.) If you are in the audience and look up from your table don’t be surprise to see Curtis Cowles in your face singing. He loves to interact with spectators and it has earned him immense popularity among fans.
To watch him in concert it becomes clear that the BuckShotVB band singer is a high-energy performer and while he can rock country music, his voice is pure country classic. It’s like Alan Jackson on steroids — Garth Brooks stage antics, Jackson’s classic voice with the heart of outlaw Kris Kristofferson.
During an era of musical change in the world of country music, Curtis brings the energy required to attract the younger crowd and the voice that holds classic fans steadfast to his music, while rebel music lovers will find his style refreshing.
Perfectly described today: his on going demeanor is a mix of classic, rebel and high-energy traits acquired along his path in life.
Born in the foothills of the Adirondack Mountains in 1982, Curtis was raised by a family of loggers and mechanics. He admits he has always been a rebel at heart and stubborn when it comes to authority. And he always knew all he wanted to do is music.
“I always loved to sing and fake play the guitar, Air Guitar!” he says.
That love became reality —from Alternative Rock to Classic Rock to Country — he hasn’t stopped singing since.
The oldest child of Robert and Laurie Cowles in Harrisville, NY, he also has a younger brother and sister, Cyle & Cortney.
His dad recognized his ambition to achieve early on (at age 13, Curtis won first place in a talent show for singing “Honky Tonk Superman”).
When Curtis bought a 72' Monte Carlo at 14-years-old for only $300, dad was ready to help him rebuild the whole car — a three-year project. The bold teenage was proud and beaming. By age 17 (with Dad’s blessing) he was allowed to take it on the road to take his prom date out on the town.
With the “pedal to the metal,” Curtis declares it was only one of many proudest days ever.
“Definitely raised hell in that thing … lots of tickets!” he declares.
And while his heart was singing from the roar of that engine, that wasn’t the only tune around — barely a year earlier he started his first band called Eternal Buzz (Alternative).
January 15, 1998, his family was hit with devastation when their home burnt to the ground. They slowly recovered and in the year 2000, Curtis graduated and headed to the Air Force.
In 2001, on the very same day as the house fire — January 15 — Curtis was in a horrific car accident that left him in a coma for 8 days with 6 months of rehab.
But not even that could keep this wildman down.
By the following year he started college and another alternative band called Indecision followed.
During this time he also won the North Country Idol in Syracuse NY and was flown to San Francisco to audition for the show American Idol. While he did not make the show, he was not deterred. It was a great experience and only fueled his drive to grow even more in his passion for music.
In 2006, he graduated college, met his wife, Sarah, and moved to Virginia Beach. Once they were settled into the new location, Curtis joined a rock band called Four Front. In early 2013, after the birth of his first son, Jack, he decided it was time to return to his roots and what was in his soul — Country!
He handpicked the best group of musicians that shared the same passion for entertainment to form his current successful group — the BuckShotVB band. They practiced for 6 months before going public in March 2014.
In March of this year the group won “The Road to Nashville” contest through the Norfolk Admirals to perform at the Nashville Bridgestone Arena for the Nashville Predators Hockey game. It was a great honor for BuckShotVB.
Curtis takes is all in stride, "Our Fans helped to get us there. We were very thankful for that opportunity.”
They’ve become one of the hottest bands in Hampton Roads and those borders are expanding.
“I try not to think of it as a big deal and just continue to be me,” the singer claims.
A modest Curtis Cowles works hard at his craft.
“I play guitar and sing pretty much everyday but I what I really love to do is entertain crowds of people. I do this will all my heart! I keep the same code for every life project.”
He admits the job also includes getting everyone on the same page; balance their calendar and blocking off dates between family and work. The key words that make it work are “balance” and “family.”
These days that balance includes his wife and now two sons; Jack age 5 and Charlie age 2 along with the coordination of nine musicians and their families. The band roster depends on the job but he boast he has picked the best of the best. And they aren’t just co-workers. BuckShotVB considers themselves family.
The band released their debut album in 2016 titled “12 gage.” The guys will spend the next couple of months at Hampton Roads’ Premier Recording Studio “Master Sound” with engineer Rob Ulsh — known for his great works with with both local and national artists. This (untitled) effort will be their sophomore album with a tentative date of January 15 for release. (It will be available on their website.)
From the boy who could sing to the man who can entertain, the singer knows how to work a stage and connect to his audience.
“I remember singing to the radio to the top of my lungs thinking ‘that sounds good,’” he recalls. “So I went with it.”