CROTON-ON-HUDSON, N.Y. – The Croton-based Crowley Brothers have accumulated more than 4 million video views on their YouTube channel, making a digital name for themselves and capturing a following of loyal fans. The trio will release their first narrative music video Monday evening, Aug. 20, at Manhattan's Kenny's Castaways.
"It is very unreal to fathom 1 million of any one thing, especially people viewing something we did," said Jeffrey Crowley, the youngest of the Crowley brothers at 18 years old. Often, the low-key recordings are done before stairs or in a bedroom, before a propped-up iPhone.
He and his brothers, Brian, 21, and Travis, 20, wrote and recorded the song "Radio." With the help of some friends, the trio directed the music video. The brothers will perform live at Kenny's Castaways at 6:30 p.m. Monday. There is no cover, but attendees must be over 18.
The three compose and sing music often to just one instrument, an acoustic guitar or a piano. "We're a band of boys, not a boy band," said Travis Crowley. The romantic tunes nevertheless spark a dramatic reaction in fans.
"As well as having beautiful voices and being incredibly talented (and rather hot as well;)) you all seem like really nice, genuine guys;D why are you not more well known?" wrote YouTube user "Rachsterrr." The song "Radio," on which the comment appears, has almost 500 comments and over 76,000 views.
The brothers created the narrative music video for "Radio" with a $5,000 budget. They pooled their paychecks to rent camera equipment, and recorded the video between working multiple jobs and studying for college, or high school in Jeffrey's case.
Locals watching the video may see familiar surroundings. Beach scenes were shot at Croton Point Park, a restaurant-date scene was shot in Briarcliff Manor's Guadalajara, and Croton Landing makes a cameo.
Perhaps a sign of the times, the three find touring more central to their musical aspirations than signing with a record company. "If it happens, that would be a dream," said Brian Crowley, a recent Purchase College graduate. "More importantly, we'd love to tour."
The three shocked themselves by winning Z100 FM's "Hometown Heroes" battle of the bands contest. From among hundreds of local bands, the three were selected by music industry professionals as one of five finalists, ultimately winning the contest by fan votes.
They credit their parents with introducing them to pop and classic rock music practically from birth. All three say they've been singing from a young age, performing in multiple theater programs.
"Some people go bowling, some people golf, some people watch television, we play music," said Travis Crowley. The three also volunteer at The Children's Hospital at Montefiore in the Bronx as part of the Musicians on Call program, which invites musicians to play in-room for children too sick to leave their hospital beds.