Holly Holden is a singer, songwriter and bassist from London, but you mightn’t guess it. A long-term love affair with Latin America and many years spent music-making in the region, most notably Cuba, transformed her sound from its original acoustic-folk into something much more sassy and syncopated.
Joining forces with drummer David Beauchamp and guitarist Frank Clark in 2015, Holly formed Holly Holden y su Banda – an electric trio whose signature ‘Tropical Soul’ sound is a Spanglish mash up of sunny, sultry pop tunes and Caribbean beats. Imagine The Police fronted by a Latina Amy Winehouse and you’re getting somewhere close.
In 2017 Holly Holden y Su Banda released their debut EP ‘Tropical Soul’ – a self-produced, six track homage to doing what you love, and loving the way you want to. From reggae-cumbia Mellow Drama to pop hit Benji Muji Mau, it’s difficult to define but easy to love. It was warmly received by critics and crowds dancing in muddy fields at some of the UK’s major music festivals including Boomtown Fair, Secret Garden Party, Greenman.
Aside from fronting her own project Holly Holden is a member of all-female London collective Deep Throat Choir and folk outfit Johnny Flynn and the Sussex Wit, with whom she has toured extensively in Europe and the UK. Holly has also worked with renowned dubstep producer Mala, touring as a vocalist on the live performances of his acclaimed album Mala in Cuba in 2014. In summer 2017 Holly released ‘Agua Salá’ a bossa-bolero track written and recorded in Cartagena, Colombia.
“a songwriter of great subtlety” – Clash
“Holly Holden is a modern example of an artist who thinks beyond borders” – Kreole Magazine
“Her sound has an element that makes us vibrate…There is no point in trying to put a label on [it]. According to Holly there are no labels, nothing is pure and music in its essence is a conversation.” – ismorbo.com
Praise for the Tropical Soul EP
“Infectious, euphoric and optimistic” – Dancing About Architecture
“Stand out cut ‘Benji Muji Mau’ is a real delight… a summer-ready pop melter” – Clash