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About Holly Golightly
Vocalist and tunesmith Holly Golightly is a musical shape-shifter whose creative constant is a voice that's pleasingly bittersweet but also honest and unpretentious. Depending on the project, Golightly can be heard channeling vintage girl group sounds (Thee Headcoatees), garage rock (her several collaborations with Billy Childish), rough-hewn pop (most of her solo albums), late-night blues (her 2001 album with Dan Melchior, Desperate Little Town), and lo-fi folk and country (Holly Golightly & the Brokeoffs), among other things. Having released over two-dozen albums between 1995 and 2018, along with numerous singles and guest appearances (including a cameo on the White Stripes' 2003 album Elephant), Golightly is as prolific as she is versatile, and her best work (1997's Painted On, 2003's Truly She Is None Other, 2014's All Her Fault) attests to her no-nonsense strength and perceptivity.
Holly Golightly joined the Billy Childish auxiliary group Thee Headcoatees in 1991 when her boyfriend, Bruce Brand (Thee Headcoatees' drummer), invited her to a gig and she ended up singing. She spent four years with Thee Headcoatees before releasing her debut record, The Good Things, in 1995. Whereas Thee Headcoatees' sound was a blend of girl group pop and three-chord garage rock with all the original songs coming from the pen of Billy Childish, Golightly's solo sound is more a blend of pre-rock electric blues, folk-rock, and less frantic rock & roll. Apart from the wide range of covers of such artists as Willie Dixon, Ike Turner, Lee Hazlewood, Wreckless Eric, and Bill Withers, Golightly also writes her own material. Since her debut in 1995, Golightly has been very prolific, releasing numerous records and singles for a variety of labels. Golightly's sound has remained remarkably consistent throughout, but each record has a quality that sets it apart from the others.
One notable record was 1999's In Blood, made with friend and mentor Billy Childish, on which the two sound like a scuffed-up British version of Nancy Sinatra and Lee Hazlewood. Another is 2001's Desperate Little Town, which marked a bit of a stylistic diversion as it is a very relaxed and mostly acoustic record. Golightly made a cameo appearance on the White Stripes' acclaimed 2003 album, Elephant, duetting with fan Jack White on "It's True That We Love One Another." The song helped boost the public profile of Golightly's next album, Truly She Is None Other, and her subsequent American tour was documented with a lo-fi live album, Down Gina's at 3. She followed it up with another album for Damaged Goods, 2004's Slowly But Surely.
Her next project was also a collaboration, this time with a Texas musician, Lawyer Dave, who also goes by the name the Brokeoffs. Recording as Holly Golightly & the Brokeoffs, their first album, 2007's You Can't Buy a Gun When You're Crying, was followed the next year by Dirt Don't Hurt. Golightly and Lawyer Dave purchased a parcel of rural property near Athens, Georgia in 2008 and moved there shortly after the release of Dirt Don't Hurt. In 2009 Holly Golightly & the Brokeoffs released an EP entitled Devil Do and in 2010 their third full-length, Medicine County, came out. Medicine County was recorded in a foreclosed church near Golightly and Lawyer Dave's land, where the two also raise horses, dogs, chickens, geese, and goats. They followed it up in 2011 with No Help Coming. In 2012 the duo released Long Distance, an album that recycled ten songs from her earlier albums in country-blues fashion.
A second release arrived later in 2012 in the form of the more considered Sunday Run Me Over. This fifth album of material under the Brokeoffs namesake was a high-energy affair blending Golightly's early garage grit with down-home country-tinged rock. The year 2014 saw the release of All Her Fault, also recorded at the duo's Georgia farm. The pair spent a relatively long time working on the album, stretching its construction out over a series of months as day jobs and power outages due to rampant summer thunderstorms slowed down the recording process. The result of the protracted recording was one of Golightly's most refined albums to date. August 2015 saw the release of the similarly elegant Slowtown Now!, a solo project that was recorded in the U.K. and found Golightly backed by a full band for the first time in over a decade. Only two months later, the busy Golightly was back with another rough-hewn album with the Brokeoffs, Coulda Shoulda Woulda. After a cycle of touring in support of both albums, she returned in 2018 with solo album Do the Get Along as well as another chapter of Brokeoffs material entitled Clippety Clop. ~ Tim Sendra & Mark Deming
- London, England
- Sep 7, 1966
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