Richie Owens


Music isn’t just in Richie Owens’ blood, it’s in every muscle and sinew of his body, not to mention his soul. Growing up, it was harder for Richie to find relatives who were not involved with music than the ones that were. His father, Louis Owens, was a singer, songwriter, guitar player, the manager of the original Owepar, the Nashville-based music publishing company founded by Richie’s Uncle Bill Owens and his cousin, Dolly Parton.

By the time Richie was a teenager he was rock fan like any kid growing in the 1970s, but he was also hanging out in recording studios, regularly meeting country stars, and leading his own bluegrass band through local TV appearances and paying gigs. Grabbing on to punk spirit in the late 70s, he became one of the founding fathers of the Nashville punk and alternative rock scene, launching one of the first Nashville indie rock labels and building his own studio when he was still in his early 20s.

Over the next several decades he been a songwriter, backup musician, bandleader, session man, engineer, and producer. He’s worked with a varied list of artists including Vince Gill, The Georgia Satellites, Social Distortion, Television guitarist Richard Lloyd, The Kentucky Headhunters, Michael Stipe of R.E.M., and more. He also produced Dolly Parton’s acclaimed 1998 album, Hungry Again, and the forthcoming Smoky Mountain DNA, along with backing Dolly for many live appearances.

Over the last two decades, he’s led his band Richie Owens & the Farm Bureau through several albums and live appearances around the world, including an acclaimed appearance at 2023 Fairport’s Cropredy Convention folk festival in the UK. In addition to founding Owepar Entertainment and constructing and running the Historic Fireside Studio, a re-birth of the classic Nashville studio that was built by his father, Louis Owens, in 1973 in partnership with Dolly Parton and Porter Wagoner.

“I feel honored to be in a position where I can help preserve and continue our family legacy,” Richie says. “But when it comes to creating music, I do it because of me. I need to express myself. I hope that people like what I do, and I’ve been very fortunate that they have. It’s a spiritual thing for me, and I consider myself very blessed.”




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