Put a Little Soul in Your Heart: A Conversation with Holly and The Guy

Jun 16, 2016

Since the show began almost two years ago, A Change of Tune has highlighted some of the best up-and-coming artists out of these West Virginia hills with podcast-y chats ranging from The Sea The Sea to Coyotes in BoxesQiet to Bud Carroll and beyond.

But those interviews have been a bit infrequent, and since West Virginia Day is coming up (not to mention A Change of Tune’s second birthday), we thought we’d do something special: 30 days, 30 brand new #WVmusic interviews that range from Morgantown alt-rockers and Parkersburg singer-songwriters to West Virginia music venues and regional artist management and beyond, all of which contribute to this state’s wild and wonderful music scene.

And today, we are chatting with Holly and The Guy, a soul-pop duo who have brought a new sound to the Americana-country-rock mix of Eastern West Virginia. So we asked them...

Credit Courtesy of Holly and the Guy

How did the band get together?

We met on Craigslist back in 2014 while we were both looking for jam partners. Things just clicked, so we decided to try and start something.

What previous bands have you all been in?

This is the first official band for both of us.

Where does the band name come from?

Our band started out as only an acoustic duo. We were trying to be unique, so we decided to call ourselves Holly and The Guy!

How has Holly and The Guy's sound changed over time (if at all)?

We have definitely gone from an acoustic/pop sound to more soul and R&B.

Where does the band play in and around West Virginia (venues, festivals, etc.)?

We spend a lot of time playing at local bars, such as 26th St. Drinkery, Jake's and Boulevard Tavern. We are excited to be playing the July edition of Ritter Live!

Holly and The Guy have played in and around Huntington over the last two years.
Credit Courtesy of Porch Unplugged

What’s it like making music in West Virginia?

Making music in West Virginia is definitely a great experience. We aren't necessarily "country" or "southern" in our sound, but we draw from the southern influence brought to us from West Virginia.

Do you feel held back by being in West Virginia? Or does it feel like a musically-supportive place?

I think it is a little of both. Not being a "country" band sometimes has its downfalls in this area, but we have met so many supportive parties around here. It's all about meeting the right people that will support your goals no matter what. I think every area is going to be like that!

Credit Courtesy of Porch Unplugged

What, in your opinion, needs to happen in the West Virginia music scene for it to move forward?

I think people just need to start supporting local music way more. Go out and catch a festival. Pay $5 to hear a band at your local bar, or buy a new band's album! We need to support our people and get the word out that great things are happening here.

What’s been the highlight of Holly and The Guy's musical journey?

I think the highlight thus far has just been playing so many shows and meeting so many great people. Musicians are great people to know and never cease to inspire us.

What’s your advice to anyone starting to make music?

Our advice would be to just keep playing! You cannot imagine how much hard work pays off in the long run. The more you practice, the better you're going to get. Just keep working hard and great things will come.

Holly and The Guys' latest release is the four-song Holly and The Guy EP. Keep an eye on their social media for their summer tour dates, not to mention their full-length album release. To hear more #WVmusic, tune in to A Change of Tune, airing Saturday nights at 10 on West Virginia Public Broadcasting. And for more #WVmusic chats, make sure to go to wvpublic.org/wvmusic and subscribe to our RSS / podcast feeds!