INDEPENDENT NEWS

NZ RnB Upcomer Jackson Owens Drops Debut EP, ‘For The Better’

Published: Fri 13 May 2022 06:26 AM
Including hit tracks ‘Better With You’ and ‘Can’t Make It Right’, soul and R upcomer Jackson Owens (Ngāti Tūwharetoa, Ngāti Awa, Te Arawa, Ngāi Tahu) has released his long-awaited debut EP, ‘For The Better’.
With over 8 million Spotify streams under his belt, Owens says the EP has been two years in the making, with many more spent perfecting his craft.
“For The Better is truly the result of who I am, the music I grew up on, where I’ve been, and what I’ve learned so far on my music journey. The good, the bad, and everything in between.”
Singles Can’t Make It Right and Better With You are joined by five new tracks on the EP: The Weekend, Have I, We Always, Mind Control, and Caption, which features Kiwi rapper MELODOWNZ. Musically, the EP combines an RnB vibe, addictive melodies, and Owens’ signature soulful voice.
After releasing chart topping track ‘Love on the Run’ with Sons of Zion, touring with Six60 and Stan Walker, and starting his career as a teenager in LA, Owens says he is ready to hone in on his own sound.
“I’m incredibly proud of the EP. It’s both nerve wracking and exhilarating to put something into the world that I’ve been pouring my heart and soul into for so long.”
The EP is Owens’ first full project with indigeneous-lead independent record label, Five AM. Head of Five AM, Rory Noble says Owens has the potential to bring Māori culture into the mainstream.
“Jackson is an old soul with a fresh look and sound. And he’s a humble family man, but has that once in a generation kind of raw talent and voice. I really think it won’t be long until he takes on the world. He’s got all the makings of a real artist.”
Owens says he hopes his music will affect his fans the way soul music affected him when he was younger.
“Growing up I listened to my koro’s music. Sam Cooke, Otis Redding, Stevie Wonder. I remember feeling that old soul and the naturalness of each of their talents and voices. It filled me with hunger to be the same.”
Jackson will be playing at the #HikoiTo100 Music Festival on May 21, his first festival since the Omicron outbreak.
‘For The Better’ EP is available now on all streaming platforms.

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