About Tom Bowser

My name is Tom Bowser. I'm a music fan and music "mixer" with a producers ear. My wife and I moved from the city of Chicago to Minneapolis. I've provided a brief description of my background in computers, music and it's production. I love to discover and listen to new music & bands. Got something new for me to listen to??




CompTIA A+ Certification Logo

I am a "computer enthusiast" that studied to complete a CompTIA A+ certification. A CompTIA A+ certification implies you have a broad base of knowledge and competency in core computer hardware and operating system technologies including installation, configuration, diagnosing, preventive maintenance and basic computer networking.

Tom Bowser sitting on a road case during setup for the Rolling Stones Voodoo Lounge Tour at Camp Randall Stadium in Madison, WI

My current interest is mixing and producing recorded music. I use a combination of analog equipment and a rack mounted computer (PC) I assembled and customized specifically to mix and produce music using Avid's Pro Tools. The computer I'm using is often referred to as a digital audio workstation or DAW.

I became interested in recording music shortly after I began working as a FOH (front of house) live sound technician. I no longer work in live sound production. The last live show I worked was sometime in 2002. After working large scale music events I concluded I prefer to work in smaller more intimate venues. I like directly interacting with the musicians I work with. I enjoy the connections and friendships I've developed over the years. These preferences guide my work today.

In 1985 I began mixing live sound for a Madison, Wisconsin psychedelic rock band that performed a mix of original music and covers. The band was heavily influenced by The Grateful Dead. One of the bands guitarists Phil Garfinkle taught me the basics of mixing live sound. I was also fortunate to mix live sound for some of the bands coming out of Butch Vigs, Madison, WI based Smart Studios during the mid to late 1980s. Some of my favorite Madison bands from that time were The Other Kids, Killdozer, the Tar Babies and the psychedelic rock band The Middle Pillar. Great people and music!

NOTE: Click any small image to see a lager version.

My brother Mark Bowser playing his 1967 Gibson Melody Maker A picture of a guitar tech Tom Bowser helped set up while working at the 10,000-seat, Dane County Coliseum in Madison, WI David Lewis of Lewis Audio giving Tom Bowser a lunch break from mixing sound at the Willy Street Block Party in Madison, WI. Monitor mix technician Tom Bowser has worked with in professional live sound reinforcement.
People Tom Bowser has worked with in professional live sound reinforcement. People Tom Bowser has worked with in professional live sound reinforcement. People Tom Bowser has worked with in professional live sound reinforcement. People Tom Bowser has worked with in professional live sound reinforcement.

From 1985 to 1995 I worked as a live sound technician mainly in bars, clubs, some outdoor events, a few music festivals, a couple of small theaters with a capacity of less than 1000 people. A majority of the bands I mixed live sound for at that time were from Madison & Milwaukee Wisconsin, Minneapolis, Minnesota and Chicago, Illinois. I worked with a few bands from New York & Los Angeles when they toured the Madison, Wisconsin area.

Tom Bowser standing in front of the main stage for a Rolling Stones concert he worked.

Rock Music | Cheap Trick & Others

In the later 1980's I also worked a short time for Lewis Audio in Madison, Wisconsin. David Lewis worked with the rock band "Cheap Trick" when they played Budokan in Tokyo, Japan in 1978. I've been a Cheap Trick fan since the release of the album "In Color" in 1977. Through David's connections with Cheap Trick I worked as a tech in a small Madison, WI club ("Headliners") as the band practiced for their upcoming world tour in support of their new album "Lap of Luxury".

The Lap of Luxury album produced three top 40 hit singles including the ballad "The Flame" at number one on the American Billboard Hot 100. Congratulations to Cheap Trick for their 2016 induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame!

Like the Cheap Trick job many of the bands I set up for at that time were one day/night events (load in, out). I also worked to set up a variety of other rock & blues bands to include: Pink Floyd, The Rolling Stones, U2, Elton John, Rod Stewart, KISS, Cheryl Crow, 38 Special, Dave Mathews, BoDeans, Fear Factory, Rob Zombie, Richard Marx, Yanni, blues music legend BB King, & others.

Professional audio FOH Harrison brand mixing console Tom Bowser has set up. Professional audio FOH mixing console Tom Bowser has set up. Four of 8 professional audio amp racks each loaded with 6 Carver Amplifiers Tom Bowser set up. Three racks of professional audio processing and digital effects devices Tom Bowser has set up.
Professional audio monitor mixing console Tom Bowser has set up. Six racks of professional audio equipment to include Crown amps, BSS EQ and electronic crossovers used for the main stage monitor mix at a country music festival Tom Bowser has set up. Two racks of professional audio EQ and digital effects Tom Bowser set up. Tom Bowser setting up the U2 Zoo TV Tour in Camp Randall Stadium, Madison, Wisconsin.

Country Music

Before the early 1990's I had not listened to nor was I interested in Country Music. It was in 1993 that I worked my first Country Jam USA concert series in Lake Geneva, Wisconsin (1993). I worked 2 separate seasons of the Country Jam series in Wisconsin. The experience and connections I gained brought more work and subsequent shows where I assisted the set up of the stage and sound system, placed microphones, monitors and more.

Some of the country greats I set up for include: Alabama, Kenny Chesney, Brooks & Dunn, The Oakridge Boys, Travis Tritt, Sawyer Brown, Mark Chesnutt, Diamond Rio, Billy Dean, Eddie Rabbitt, Marty Stuart, Confederate Railroad, Tracy Lawrence, Ricky Van Shelton, Tracy Byrd, Sammy Kershaw, Dolly Parton, Kenny Rogers, Wynonna Judd, Vince Gill, John Michael Montgomery, Randy Travis, Lee Roy Parnell, Lorrie Morgan, Michelle Wright, Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, Ricky Lynn Gregg, Ricky Van Shelton, Little Texas, Martina McBride (McBride & The Ride), Charlie Daniels, Tanya Tucker, and the talented, tech friendly Suzy Bogguss, Toby Keith, & more.

Charlie Daniels Band Member Tom Bowser set up Suzy Bogguss Photograph of Country Music instruments taken at a show Tom Bowser set up Tom Bowser set up Martina McBride
Tom Bowser set up the Charlie Daniels Band Tom Bowser and Country Jam crew members Tom Bowser set up for the drummer of the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band Tom Bowser set up the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band at Country Jam USA
Tom Bowser set up the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band Country Jam audience taken from the main stage early 1990s Tom Bowser worked to set up Country Jam Tom Bowser working to set up Country Jam
Tom Bowser set up the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band Tanya Tucker Ricky Lynn Gregg Toby Keith

My favorite memory of that time period was sitting backstage one night with the talented Faith Hill while we watched Toby Keith during his Country Jam performance at Lake Geneva, Wisconsin in the early 1990's. I learned an incredible amount from the technicians I worked with in country music. The great talent of the performers and technicians changed my mind about country music. I now include myself as a country music fan. In my mind no one tells a story better than a country musician playing a country song.

Pink Floyd, U2, The Rolling Stones

I worked two different Pink Floyd tours (A Momentary Lapse of Reason, May 20, 1988, and The Division Bell, July 3, 1994), U2's Zoo TV tour (September 13, 1992) and both the The Rolling Stones, Steel Wheels and Voodoo Lounge tours (August 26, 1994, and October 6, 1997) when they played Camp Randall Stadium in Madison, Wisconsin. Camp Randall hosts the University of Wisconsin Badgers football team. I worked these and other large shows through the IATSE (International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees) Local 251 Madison Stagehands Union.

A picture of the main stage of the Rolling Stones Voodoo Lounge Tour taken by Tom Bowser a few hours before the concert. Tom Bowser worked the night of the show.

These shows were great learning opportunities. I worked as a "climber" helping to build the main stage, hung the motors used to fly the sound system and similar tasks. I also worked as part of the sound crew to assemble and fly (hang) the sound system & much more. It was an added bonus that I was able work the night of the shows and see the performances for FREE. How much money does a large rock tour make? View this list of the highest earning concert tours in history.

Tom Bowser sitting on  road case when setting up The Rolling Stones Voodoo Lounge Tour Picture of the main stage from the bleachers of Camp Randall Stadium while Tom Bowser helped to erect the main stage for The Rolling Stones Voodoo Lounge Tour Picture of the the main stage from the bleachers of Camp Randall Stadium while Tom Bowser helped to erect support columns for main stage for The Rolling Stones Voodoo Lounge Tour Tom Bowser takes picture from the main stage of The Rolling Stones Voodoo Lounge Tour looking into the stadium. Chairs for audience members have been set up on the field and the FOH (Front Of House) mix position has been erected (back left corner)
Tom Bowser standing in front of stage scenery and some FOH (Front Of House) speaker cabinets/boxes in front of the stage of The Rolling Stones Voodoo Lounge Tour. Picture of Tom Bowser sitting to the right (house right) of the main stage for The Rolling Stones Voodoo Lounge Tour. He is wearing a Country Jam t-shirt from the 4 day Country Jam country music festival he worked a few days prior to working this  Rolling Stones tour concert. Picture Tom Bowser took of the completed stage and audience area on the football field for The Rolling Stones Voodoo Lounge Tour. This picture was taken a few hours before the concert was to begin. Tom Bowser standing on the main stage the night of the show for The Rolling Stones Voodoo Lounge tour. He is wearing his climbing harness and tool belt.
A picture Tom Bowser took of a house left, decorative, side fill speaker and light tower at the front of The Rolling Stones, Voodoo Lounge tour main stage. The picture was taken a few hours before the show was to begin later in the evening at Camp Randall Stadium in Madison, WI. Tom Bowser standing inside the front structure of the Rolling Stones, Voodoo Lounge tour main stage the day of the show. Some of the FOH (front of house) speaker array has been flown (hoisted in position) and is visible behind and to Tom's right. A closeup picture Tom Bowser took of a house right, decorative, side fill speaker and light tower at the front of The Rolling Stones, Voodoo Lounge tour main stage. This picture was taken a few hours before the show was to begin later in the evening at Camp Randall Stadium in Madison, WI. A picture of Tom Bowser standing in the center of the football field with the partially constructed main stage for the U2 Zoo TV Tour in the backgroud.

Jazz & Funk

One of my favorite memories from the late 80's was mixing live sound at a Madison, Wisconsin club hosting a charitable event to raise money for the internationally recognized and oh so funky drummer Clyde Stubblefield. Clyde is probably best known as a drummer for the world renowned, grand master of funk music James Brown. Clyde is also one of the most often sampled drummers in the world.

That night rekindled my interest in Jazz. Headlining performances included Chicago native Richard Davis. Richard Davis is one of the most often recorded bass players in music. He's performed with a diversity of talented and well known musicians including one of my favorite jazz icons Sun Ra. Chicago based jazz saxophonist Roscoe Mitchell also played that night. Roscoe Mitchell was playing with the internationally famous Art Ensemble of Chicago at the time. He was already at the forefront of avant-garde jazz. It's been many years since that night and I still get a rush thinking about the music and performances I experienced.

In Search of Jim Morrison - Paris, France

I've been a long time fan of Jim Morrison, lead vocalist for the rock band The Doors. During our most recent visit to Paris my wife and I went in search of the grave site of Jim Morrison in Père Lachaise Cemetery, Paris, France.

Walking down a cobblestone road in Père Lachaise Cemetery, Paris, France

We were not alone as we wandered through the long isles, cobblestone roads and rows of decrepit tombs that seemed long forgotten. My wife and I encountered fans and musicians from all over the world who like us were searching for James Douglas Morrison. We met punk rockers from England, metal heads from Germany, rockers from France, Deadheads from the US and others that day.

View photos my wife and I took of Jim Morrison's grave site and the Père Lachaise Cemetery in Paris, France. Once you arrive at the page with pictures click on the 3 vertical dots in the upper right hand side and choose slideshow.



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