Holly Golightly and The Brokeoffs
Holly Golightly was born in London and grew up in a bohemian household. She was fed a diet of psychedelic, blues and soul music. Lawyer Dave was raised in Texas on a diet of religion, country blues, and forbidden heavy metal. The end result of this combination is pure magic on their new album, Medicine County. Genuine love and quick-witted banter have made the duo unique and down-right entertaining. They live in rural Georgia.
Having never sung a note before, Holly kicked off her musical career in the legendary garage band Thee Headcoatees. After four years as a Headcoatee, Holly started a solo career, whilst still singing with the band. Her first full length record, released in 1995, was The Good Things. Since thed, she has become one of the most interesting and diverse artists to emerge from The Medway Delta.
Holly primarily writes her own material, interspersed with a wide range of cover songs by such artists as Willie Dixon, Ike Turner, Lee Hazlewood, Wreckless Eric, and Bill Withers to name a few. Although her sound has remained remarkably consistent throughout her career, each record has a quality that sets it apart from the others.
Aside from her own records, Holly has also made guest appearances on various other projects over the years, from bands such as Mudhoney, The White Stripes, etc. In fact, due to her initial collaboration with The White Stripes, she was then invited to sing a duet with frontman Jack White on the track “It’s True That We Love One Another,” which then appeared on the Stripes breakthrough album Elephant. It was this exposure that gave her a much wider audience for the future.
A few albums later brought Holly to her 2007 release, You Can’t Buy A Gun When You’re Crying, in collaboration with long-time friend and US touring companion Lawyer Dave. The two became the collective Holly Golightly & The Brokeoffs and have been making records together ever since. This particular album of songs was recorded at home and it is packed with great tunes and eccentric themes.
Holly Golightly & The Brokeoffs’ follow-up album Dirt Don’t Hurt (Transdreamer Records/2008) was recorded during a short break in the middle of a 50-date European tour. Holly and Lawyer Dave found themselves in Gijon, Spain where they spent five days in the vintage analog studio, Circo Perotti, producing 14 gritty tracks that truly reflect the album’s title.
More recently, The Brokeoffs have been at it again with the release of their four-song EP Devil Do (Transdreamer Records) in late 2009. The EP features an even more devilish live version of “Devil Do,” which originally appeared on You Can’t Buy A Gun When You’re Crying, and an up-tempo Brokeoff-flavored version of “One More Fact” from Holly’s Painted On release. Holly and Dave do amazing justice to Lee Hazlewood’s classic “Dark In My Heart”; and master an even trippier version of their own “Whoopie Ti Yi Yo,” which also appeared on You Can’t Buy A Gun When You’re Crying.
Now at the start of a new year, the Brokeoffs prepare for their most recent release, Medicine County, out March 30, 2010 via Transdreamer Records. Recorded in an abandoned, recently foreclosed-upon church near to home, this album features twelve new tracks: eight originals by Golightly & The Brokeoffs alongside traditional numbers like “Blood On the Saddle” and “Jack O’Diamonds.”
When describing the new album, Holly says it seems peppier than their last full-length, probably because she and Dave cut the tracks during a rare period of downtime: "There's only one slower song on it, which I didn't notice until afterward," she says. "I just think we had more energy than usual. We hadn't been recording in the middle of a tour, which we had to do for the last record and we had the opportunity to sift through potential tracks and decide. It was a case of [the raucous songs] being the ones that stood out as the ones we wanted to put on it. Having a bit more time makes it different than the other records."
The album kicks off with “Forget It,” a track Holly says, “is for people to roller skate to...” Then, “Two Left Feet,” a song that Holly advocates “for anyone who can’t dance… which has alternatively become known as our porno number.” Among other tracks includes a chilling version of “Blood On The Saddle,” a childhood favorite of Lawyer Dave. “We felt we could bring some real conviction and passion to this song” Holly says, “gleened from our first hand, personal experiences.”
While there’s a spectral quality to those traditional songs and others on the album, they offer some levity and a sharp lyrical wit on tunes like “Eyes in the Back of My Head,” in addition to the album’s title track (“100 miles from nowhere, everybody needs a drink”). As Vanity Fair describes the lead off track, Forget It as “milky keyboards written in a standard key, crisp snare drums, and [Holly’s] whisky-soaked voice that sounds like it’s being played from a dusted-off record.”
Holly Golightly and The Brokeoffs plan an extensive U.S. tour this spring in support of Medicine County.
If you haven't heard a truly great voice lately, you might want to check out Daniel Wayne. There's no doubt that distinguishing yourself as a singer-songwriter can be difficult; it's a style where it's easy to be mediocre, difficult to be great. But that voice puts to rest the doubters – sweet through the middle and upper ranges and flawless on the high notes, Wayne is instantly recognizable as well as accessible. A good example can be heard on the haunting, lonely solo number, "Pub's Crawl", which also takes an abrupt turn into a religious hymn at the end. Humble and appreciative between songs, the Ohio native comes across likable as well (the Midwestern thing again?). As for his songs, many are tinged with a light country twang, and navigate both indie gloom and homespun folk themes with equal skill.
I will admit that I had not heard of Wayne before I caught this Glasslands Gallery set opening for Jessica Lea Mayfield (that recording here), but apparently I was behind the curve. A sizable crowd showed up to catch his opening set, and by the end, a pretty full house was paying rapt attention. Wayne split the set equally between solo acoustic and full-band electric numbers, and we have served up a streaming example of each below (along with the complete-set download, of course). When the full band comes in during the first chorus of "Birds," you can tell that Wayne's big voice is equally if not better suited to the full-band treatment. The full-band songs also give Wayne a broader palette for his arrangements, and he takes full advantage on songs like the countrified "Virgin Saint", streaming below. Despite being the first opener of the night, Wayne put forth a full 50-minute set that alone was worth the show's price of admission. As Wayne himself put it in a recent interview on the CBS News website, "Every time I get on the stage, I give it everything I have." This was only my first Daniel Wayne performance, but that sure seemed to be the case.
I recorded this set with Schoeps MK22 "open cardiod" microphones and a flawless soundboard feed provided by Josh Thiel, the house engineer at Glasslands. The sound is outstanding. Enjoy!
"(DANIEL WAYNE) is one of the TOP 5 NY ACTS you MUST SEE IN 2012"
"Cincinnati-bred, Brooklyn-based auteur Daniel Wayne pens dark Americana with indie melancholy and a distinct bluegrass twang." (TIME OUT NY)
"One of the stand-outs of the night was Daniel Wayne....a cross between Harry Nilsson and the spooky tones of "Twin Peaks." EXAMINER.COM
"..., but Daniel Wayne went on first, stole the show, and was an incredibly hard act to follow." -DAILY NUGGETS BLOGSPOT
"Daniel Wayne plays that steel string, sunburst Guild guitar like his mama told him not to. He dresses like Johnny Cash, has attitude like Bob Dylan and plays bar chords with his thumb. You'll think this guy's a real-live outlaw until he sweetens up between songs and starts calling the audience "y'all." Sometimes bluesy, Daniel Wayne has a classic country backbone with eerie undertones: like if Jerry Reed had written the Natural Born Killers soundtrack. Slow songs like "Far From Here" sound like My Morning Jacket, while "The Fool" gristles like a basey Townes Van Zant song."
-Jenny Luczak, Deli Magazine
"As a photographer, there are certain artists that when I study them on stage before a show, I know despite a seemingly placid and pure appearance, some sort of musical fury is seething beneath the surface about to be unleashed. People like Shilpa Ray or Langhorne Slim come to mind. In the case of Daniel Wayne, you can add a baby-faced fury to those qualities. While not loud or fast, he performs with a delicate strength - precise and passionate. His style of singing and playing is such that there's power in the silences between strums and verses, that's how much he had the crowd on a string. The bottom line is that he's got that can't-be-taught magnetism which solo male singer-songwriters tend to try to compensate for with a harmonica....it's always rewarding seeing and shooting a star on the rise lighting up a small room before they go on to be shared by the rest of the world." (GIMME SHUTTER REVIEW of
Daniel Wayne 05.05.11 @ Mercury Lounge NYC)