Bosley (aka The Bos)
Gig Seeker Pro

Bosley (aka The Bos)

Baltimore, Maryland, United States | Established. Jan 01, 2014

Baltimore, Maryland, United States
Established on Jan, 2014
Band Pop Neo Soul




"Live DC: Harmonic Blue & Bosley @DC9"

"Bosley [and his band have] been playing together for a year and a half almost exclusively in the Baltimore area; with few expectations before seeing them the only thing I could think after their set was: “How are they so good?... [Bosley] translates the jazz guitar and saxophone/trumpet solos into a participatory fiasco of dancing, shouting and crowd engagement. ...just one cape shy of James Brown’s brand new bag and a pompadour short of Janelle Monae’s tightrope." - Brightest Young Things

"Soul Man"

There may be many people bopping around inside Baltimore's young R&B bandleader Bosley Brown, but if you've only heard his music or seen his large ensemble live, watched his highly polished music videos, heard him interviewed on the radio, or visited his website, you might just see the prancing pop peacock. He likes his suits cut '60s slim and wears them well. His brown hair flees his face and leaves him looking like he's always just arrived by speeding convertible. Onstage he wiggles around as if gravity doesn't apply to him. Dude has the Teflon temerity to cover Marvin Gaye in concert and the confidence to pull it off. And he can flash a grin as cockily shit-eating as those rich kids in college you run into who know they will never have to work for anything in their lives.

This is the Bosley (yes, he goes by just the first name) who within a few minutes of meeting up to talk about his solid new self-released album, The Dirty Dogs Radio Show, opines: "I've got a high-class problem, which is I don't even know what song [from the album] the single is," he says, and breaks into that invitation-to-trouble smile. "You tell me."

He's playing a bit of a role, the swaggering pop singer, and it's been around at least since record labels realized they needed to entice kids to buy rock 'n' roll records. These days you run across it everywhere, from the ringtone-endorsed hip-hop MC with but one mixtape to his name who talks about himself in the third person to the aspiring YouTube sensations who address their web cams as if speaking to directly to Ryan Seacrest. This is theoretically how one operates if one wants to be part of what we call pop music.

It's easy to understand why Bosley does this: The 28-year-old has the songs to back it up. Dirty Dogs is a big step up from his 2011 eight-song debut, Honey Pig, and not just in terms of its better, lusher production. Dogs' 14 songs run from soul barnburners such as "Freaky" to brass-powered hip-hop sarcasm of "American Gurlz," from the Waits-ian late-night croon of "Some Friends of Mine" to Broadway-musical-catchy "I Don't Mind the Sunshine," from Chi-Lites-like glow of "Lovesick" to the pure pop adrenaline of "Love Shuga." Any one of these songs wouldn't feel out of place in pop-radio or music-channel rotation. And Bosley knows it.

He also recognizes the chasm between where he is right now and placement in that pop rotation. "Where am I? I'm in that place where I know how good my shit is," he says. By this time in the conversation, the salesman's smile is gone. "But no matter how good your music is, so I've been told, nobody is really going to mess with you until they see your stats. You need to prove that you're out of first gear."

He's talking about everything that goes into trying to make himself, his music, and his band look like it has enough skin in the game to sit at pop's high-stakes table. He's talking about the cold calls, the emails and follow-up emails, and worrying about where money is coming in and where it's going out. He's talking about how he has to approach what he loves as his job.

"I know this sounds like I'm tooting my own horn, but we've played cold rooms in every city on the East Coast and, by the end of our set, people are howling and on their feet," Bosley says. "People love it and I get to experience this influx of joy at my shows. So I know that I'm supposed to be doing this. Music is not a business for me, but I have to think about it as one because I'm trying to stop hemorrhaging money."

If you've paid attention to local music for a minute, you might recognize Bosley as the young soul man who previously performed as Tommy Tucker and the Supernaturals, and in a more traditional singer/songwriter mold before that as Tucker Mayer.

This Bosley is the much more interesting person, the young artist who is realizing that if he wants to go from being a music businessman to being a business, man, he has to grow up. And this Bosley, in all honestly, sells his music better than any pop peacock ever could.

Listening to him think out loud about music reveals how much time he's put into considering what he does and what he wants out of it. Talking about songwriting, he can sound like one of those Brill Building workhorses who seemed able to pluck lines out of thin air. "I think the lyrics of a song and the meaning of the lyrics will evince themselves if you go for the most natural-feeling syllabic cadence," Bosley says. "If I'm singing something, the thing that feels the most natural to me and the funkiest will have natural consonant breaks in it. And if you match up those natural breaks with words that fit that, suddenly a phrase will come to the surface. It's one of those things where I kind of come down on the side of [thinking that] the song is already there. Always. It's just your job to find it."

He's trying to find pop songs, and he knows that you can't write superficial pop music without absolutely loving superficial pop music-not as a guilty pleasure, not ironically, not kinda/sorta. "You can only write a good, contrived, formulaic pop song if it's from the heart," he says. "'Love Shuga' is an A-plus formulaic pop song. It's two and a half minutes long and it burns. But you can only do that stuff when you're trying to be genuine, when you're trying to have fun and kick it from the heart. I don't want to put out songs that I don't like, that don't move me."

Moving himself is step one; figuring out how to get those songs out there so they can move others is the eternal question. Three years between albums is a long time, and he's trying to get better at coordinating all the ways in which he releases his music. In February he debuted a clever time-lapse video for Honey Pig's "Just Like You," and he hopes to get a new video for Dogs' "Temptation" out in May. He wanted to have the new album, a new single, and a new video all cued up to be unrolled the way major-label artists do, but he just wasn't able to pull it off.

That's all part of trying to look the pop part in order to prove he's worth taking a chance on. "I guess I'm trying to make a break for myself," Bosley says, the smile returning a bit. "I hope that there's some point where I can find a pretty sustainable place to make music, but I don't know. Hopefully one of these days you'll see me release a new video with a new album and a new song all right on time. Hasn't happened yet, but I'm getting there." ? - City Paper

"Baltimore Magazine Album Review"

Revivalist bands evoking 1960s R&B revues and funk icons like James Brown are a dime a dozen, but this local ensemble puts a fresh spin on classic soul. Dirty Dogs has the requisite punchy horns, sassy harmonies, and percussive guitar licks, but with some hip-hop swagger and piano lunacy in the mix. Songs like “American Gurlz” and “Keep Good Time” exude an ecstatic and elastic vibe that stretches Bosley past any notion of genre restraint. - Baltimore Magazine

"Bill Bellamy, MTV, Def Jam's "How to Be a Player" on Bosley"

"Naw, now, you see THIS young man has the spirit inside of him!"

-- Direct Quote on Air from Bill Bellamy on 98 Rock Baltimore 5/3/11. - 98 Rock Baltimore

"The Hip List"

#1) Bosley.
"With each step, Bosley's black-and-white wing tips pound out the beat on the streets of Baltimore in the music video "SharpShooter." From his Ray Bans to his trademark Brogues, the Motown-esque singer oozes soul. Citing style influences as varied as Gene Kelly, Marvin Gaye, and The Beatles... He surrounds himself with sexy backup singers, vintage mics, and soulful brass, bass and drums-- all adding up to create the Bosley persona. On any given night, his band puts on a well thought out show from the sound to the synchronized dance moves to the mix of vintage and modern threads that projects a modern spin on 60's cool." - Baltimore Magazine, September 2013


Honey Pig (2011)

The Dirty Dogs Radio Show (2014)



Baltimore's native son and soul sensation, Bosley, has been writing and performing since childhood; his career accelerated in 2012 following the release of his outstanding debut album Honey Pig which won him a devoted fan base and garnered him growing critical acclaim. Named #1 on Baltimore Magazine's Hip List, and "Best Band of 2014" Bosley and his super-tight, 9-piece band channel eclectic influences from 40's Swing to 60's R&B to 80's Hip Hop and continue to turn out unique, original pop music and blazing, high-energy live performances. The brand new album The Dirty Dogs Radio Show was released in March 2014 to rave reviews. Dance parties imminent.

Band Members