Songbird Takes Flight

Sophomore Avery Owen releases EP album titled ‘Songbird’

by: Amelia Anglin

Varsity athlete, excellent student, and lover of music, sophomore Avery Owen is a typical 14-year-old girl, navigating through high school like a champ.
Oh, and she just released her first album. So typical, right?

After three years of hard work, Owen finally released her first Extended Play album : “Songbird”, on Sept. 27. Though Owen compares her own album to the stylings of late 2000s lovesick Taylor Swift, with acoustic instrumentals and delicate vocals, she insisted repetitively, “It is not about a boy. I want to make that clear. Except for ‘Take It Away,’ that’s the only one.”

Owen does an excellent job of including experiences that many can relate to throughout the album. Rather than rambling about her life as some artists do, she constructs stories, each of which can be relevant to anyone, especially the lives of high schoolers.
From the tear-jerking “Moving On,” that describes the going of separate ways, to the empowering breakup song, “Take It Away,” Owen puts her own spin on some of the most common feelings affiliated with teenagers.

“She does a lot of trying to speak for everyone, not just something that she can relate to, but what other people can relate to,” said sophomore Jacqui Silveira, a childhood friend that Owen used to sing with and dream of being famous with during middle school.

Owen has been taking guitar lessons since she was 12, when she approached Matt Bureau, music teacher and owner of the Music Bureau in Salem. Though she’s made incredible progress with the guitar since beginning lessons, the guitar in the album is played by Bureau due to Owen’s lack of experience, especially in the early stages of creation. Bureau has been a critical part of the production of “Songbird”, between his experience, laid back persona, and providing the guitar.

Owen had brought about 30 songs into the studio, some of which were co-written by Bureau, but he was initially impressed with the maturity of her songwriting upon meeting with her for the first time.

“It struck me that they were already in song structure … I had to do very little tweaking,” said Bureau. The six songs picked for the album came naturally to Owen; there were almost no situations of writer’s block. Bureau said that this smoothness during the writing process was the most impressive part of Owen’s album in his  perspective.

Owen spoke similarly of the experience, describing moments in the studio as a time to “let loose” and have fun. One of Owen’s initial struggles when she began singing was convincing her parents to let her take music  lessons.

“When I was 8 I told my mom that I wanted to become a singer and I wanted to take music lessons and it took until I was 12 to finally give in. I had to beg her,” said Owen.
Songbird tells a story with every song, every strum of the guitar, and every beat of the drum. The messages embedded in each piece of the album can be interpreted a hundred different ways, but ultimately each song is individualized to the ear of the listener, crafted by the one and only Avery Owen to fit the mind of anyone willing to listen.

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