As an active soloist, chamber musician, electronic musician, and composer originally from the United States, Andy Cowling works with a broad range of musical expression, from baroque classical guitar to modern music composed to address the social issues of the present day. Cowling has presented solo and chamber music recitals, installation pieces, and electronic music performances throughout the United States and Europe.
In 2014, Andy Cowling graduated summa cum laude from the Hochschule für Musik Theater und Medien Hannover with a Master of Music performance where he studied under classical guitarist, Prof. Frank Bungarten. In the USA, Cowling studied at Ball State University in Muncie, IN under Prof. Paul Reilly where he received his Bachelor of Music in classical guitar performance in 2009 and an Artist Diploma in classical guitar performance in 2011.
In addition to classical guitar, Cowling composes and performs electronic music. His debut solo work, “July 4, 2020”, was released on the Mille Plateaux label in the summer of 2020. A follow-up release, also on on Mille Plateaux, "November 2, 2020" came soon afterwards.
Continuing his relationship with Mille Plateaux, Cowling released his debut full length album "star of the west" in 2022. The composition of the album took place from November 2020 to April 2021 and covered the events that transpired within that timeframe. The project was originally done in fulfillment of the Musikfonds Stipendium under the title "Gegen Eskapistche Unterhaltung".
The main theme of Cowling's solo works is an unwaveringly critical dissection of current social and political events. In his solo works, Cowling employs a musical language that combines elements of noise, pop, classical music, and everything else in-between that can be shaped into a snapshot of the successive moments of failure, turmoil, oppression, desperation, upheaval, and the lies that are repeated until they are lost to time. Instead of slowly forgetting, Cowling attempts to burn the memory of these combined moments directly into the listeners minds with the raw sounds of his anti-escapist music.
Since 2016, Cowling has had an ongoing collaboration with John-Robin Bold. Under the moniker BOLD/COWLING, the duo has performed extensively across Europe. In February 2021, the duo released their debut album, "we may be on the way", as a tape/digital release on Glenn Dancer Records. In 2021 BOLD/COWLING won the commission for a sound installation at the Musik21 Festival Niedersachsen with their proposal "SYNOPSIS". Also in 2021 the duo collaborated with Hamburg based visual artist Daniel Vier to create the audiovisual installation "BREATHE" The project is still under further development and, as part of winning the award for interoperability from the SAAI Factory, will be exhibited extensively in the coming year.
Cowling has also worked with the visual artist/photographer Mera Dorin in late 2021 to provide the sound for the audiovisual installation "HAUTGRENZEN", which was presented as part of Dorin's "KOERPER GRENZ KONTROLLEN" exhibition at Kunstraum 53 in Hildesheim, Germany.
Cowling has held several teaching positions throughout his career, in the USA he worked as an adjunct professor at Taylor University and as the Graduate Teaching Assistant for Guitar at Ball State University. Currently he is teaching Classical Guitar at the CJD Musische Akademie in Braunschweig, Germany and he additionally maintains a private studio.
Additionally Cowling is the co-curator and sound technician for Schallfront, a Hannover based concert series for neue (classical) and experimental electronic music.