Collin Clowes is a Singer/Songwriter/Producer from Gorham/Thunder Bay, ON Canada. His music consists of an indie pop sound with songwriting that captures beautiful yet heartbreaking personal stories. When he was 17 years old, Collin started showing symptoms that there was something wrong with his health. This eventually turned out to be a very serious illness that left doctors perplexed. This illness was mostly attacking his liver causing irreversible damage. There was also internal bleeding but Collin was extremely lucky he went into the hospital as the doctors were able to stabilize him as his body was trying to shut down. Collin likes to mention that he is extremely grateful for both the staff at the Thunder Bay Regional Health Science Centre as well as the Toronto General Hospital, the latter being where Collin would be spending a lot of time in. The doctors never found out what this illness is or why it came to be, but they did figure that Collin would need a liver transplant sometime in the future due to the extent of damage done. At 17, one doctor said “Collin has the body of a 50 year old alcoholic”. Another doctor said that the illness must have been something Collin was born with.
After spending a lot of time in the hospital, he was able to go back home. Collin then decided he would throw himself into something he always wanted to try, which was writing, performing & creating music. Collin mentions that this was a time where he began to withdraw from his childhood friends & just began focusing on music. Throughout this time, he started playing live, practicing music everyday all while each day, Collin felt his body getting worse from the mysterious illness. Mentally, it was hard too because no one knew where or why this was happening. This was one of his lowest points, but he mentions that what kept him going was raising a new puppy he named, June. Raising June was a life changing experience for Collin.
When Collin first appeared on the local music scene in Thunder Bay, people seemed to gravitate towards his acoustic singer/songwriter style which gave him confidence to put in the hours of playing live around Thunder Bay & Toronto. Collin kept it up for 4 years but the illness began to shut down his liver faster than what the doctors had expected. It got so bad that he needed to be rushed to Toronto to get a liver transplant at the Toronto General Hospital with his oldest sister being the donor. They both recovered extremely well & went on to have good health; although the illness is still with Collin so it’s still a bit of a rollercoaster, but he’s been extremely grateful for a second chance at life as well as being healthy enough to continue to create & try to get better at the craft of making music.
After spending about 3-4 months in Toronto recovering from the liver transplant, Collin got to go back home. This was his happiest point because he felt like a new person. All of his life, he was sick so now he was finally able to experience a fresh mindset & fresh senses. Before the transplant, he explains that it was hard to think straight & understand things. Everything felt dull to him but doctors would tell him this was most likely due to bad chemicals getting released from the damaged liver into his brain for so long. When he was back home, Collin was accepted into the Songwriting & Performance Arts Program at Seneca College back in Toronto. This was a huge decision as he was finally home but felt strongly that he needed to make a step to try & learn from professionals & other musicians. Although it was a hard time living in Toronto, Collin feels like this is where he really honed in on his songwriting skill.
As soon as the college program ended, his mental health went on the decline as he never took the time to process everything that happened with the illness & liver transplant. This was another time where Collin felt at his lowest but this time, he was alone in Toronto, mad at himself for leaving home. He then moved back home to Thunder Bay where he began building a small studio & tried learning about the whole process of making music. This was right at the start of the pandemic so Collin could basically stay in his bedroom studio recording & trying to get better 24/7. After 2 years of trial & error, he released “Sleepy” in 2021; a 7 song EP dedicated to June, who sadly passed away as Collin was finishing the project. The EP brings Collin back to what he says was the happiest time of his life.
The positive reception of sleepy gave Collin some much needed confidence. After putting out a few songs in 2022, Collin is finishing the year with a new small project called “Lily”. A 5 track EP with themes of parting ways, saying goodbye & grief.