Luke Dowler is packing up his things and “Going to Montana.” He’d love for you to join if you are so inclined… Even better, you don’t actually have to travel to see and feel the spirit of this beautiful, mountainous Northwestern state since Dowler has gone to the effort of showing you all of the scenic wonders of the place they refer to as “Big Sky Country.”
A peaceful and cathartic affair, Dowler seems right at home while immersed in nature, as he plays his guitar in front of gigantic mountains, marvellous sunsets, and clouds that look like they were painted onto the sky. A working-class, down-to-earth songwriter, what you see is what you get with Dowler. There’s no hype or pretentiousness when it comes to the singer-songwriter, he’s simply a man with a guitar in his hands and positive vibes on his mind, looking to share them with whoever is interested in listening.
Shedding some bright light on the writing and recording process and what inspired “Going to Montana,” Dowler commented, “I wrote this while I was working with longtime Bruce Springsteen engineer and producer, Toby Scott. I sent him a bunch of demos and ideas and we got together after he had listened through them, and he basically told me that I needed to go back to the drawing board. He picked through the ideas and let me know what wasn’t working with each one. I can’t lie, it was a tough two hours, but he was basically right. I went home and started writing ‘Going To Montana’ and tracked a demo by the end of the week. From there I sent it over to Levi Stugelmeyer (Caitlyn Smith, The Cactus Blossoms) in Minneapolis and we worked on it remotely before it was mastered by Grammy winner, Huntley Miller.”
Dowler further adds, “The story in ‘Going To Montana’ is one I’ve heard from people over and over as I have toured across Montana, because whether it was five days, five years, or five generations ago, unless they are indigenous, someone looked at their life and wanted something else, somewhere else. They packed their life up and moved to the mountains. So really, it’s the immigrant and the dreamer’s story. It’s even really the story of America, and in that context, ‘Going To Montana’ is a song about being human and overcoming odds to make a life instead of letting life happen.”
Despite the many twists and turns that have arisen in life, one thing has remained constant for Dowler; he’s always kept a guitar close by no matter where life has taken him. Growing up in a military family, Dowler spent much of his youth moving around, forced to start over several times. To get by, he in part relied on his love of music which he began to more fully immerse himself in after moving to Montana from Japan. Along with some classmates, he formed a punk rock band that quickly gained much local popularity. From there, Dowler became the frontman of Three Minutes From Home before issuing his first solo album titled Polarized in 2012. Being the working class artist that he is, Dowler has been around the world and back many times, including several trips through the U.S. and Canada, along with some stops in Europe and Australia. While not strumming away on his guitar, you can find the multi-talented Dowler composing film scores with his credits including the films Finding Faeries, The Forlorned, and Afterlight.
As we await some return to normalcy, it’s nice to know that we have artists such as Luke Dowler there to inspire us through the dark times.