Holly Rees – Interview

Interview with Pete Devine of Pete’s Rock News and Views (

PD:  How would you describe yourself or your band as an artist?

HR: Loud sad queer indie-rock, but with some fun nonsense sprinkled in.


PD: Can you tell us briefly about your background – i.e. where you’re from, how you came to make music, etc.

HR: I’m based in Newcastle Upon Tyne in the North-East of the UK, and started out making music as a solo acoustic singer-songwriter, playing open mic nights, and that somehow snowballed into a full career and a transition into a full blown bash band.


PD: Who and what inspires you to make music, both in terms of musical and other influences? What do you like to write about in your songs?

HR: Musical influences can be everything and anything. I love musicians like Courtney Barnett and Boygenius, but I listen to everything – right now I’ve been listening to a lot of Monica Martin, she just has some gorgeous songwriting.

I write about quite a range as well – the typical songwriting fodder in life and love, but more recently my writing has become more political. I think as I’ve gotten older and I’m happier in myself and my life, the songs are mirroring that looking outwards more. I really like trying to find the universal details that connect people, writing something that’s specific and honest to me or my feelings, but at the same time reflects a universal feeling that anyone could connect to. I think that’s the real power in songwriting.


PD: What are your aspirations as an artist?

HR: I just want to get better and better. Each track I put out I want to feel closer to where I want to be. I’d also really like to get to touring more – I love touring, I’ve toured a fair bit solo but I really want to take the band on the road more.


PD: What is the proudest moment in your music career so far?

HR: That’s a tricky one! Probably pulling off the Canadian tour I did in 2018. That was mad.


PD: Promoting one’s music is such a challenge these days, especially with so many new artists emerging from bedrooms in the day of the home studio. How is that going?

HR: Promotion is always the side that I struggle with. As an independent musician you end up having to be a million people in one – the artist, the producer, the manager, the agent, the PR company..



PD: And how do you book and promote your live shows and tours? Any performances coming up?

HR: We are lucky to be at the stage where we’re often approached for shows, but I would really like to break out into some newer cities for full-band shows! We have a string of dates coming up to promote ‘Missing Out (Again)’ – kicking it all off at a Newcastle hometown headliner on the 5th March.


PD: What do you think about downloading music online? What about streaming sites like Spotify?

HR: Two-sided coin really – I love how these sites make finding new music so easy, but the flip side is how artist’s get such a rough deal.


PD: What song do you wish you’d written and why?

HR: I wish I’d written ‘Motion Sickness’ by Phoebe Bridgers. What an absolute tune.


PD: Is there anything you don’t like about the music industry, which you would change if you could?

HR: I think there’s a lot wrong with the industry – a lot of gatekeeping, and a lot of predators. But the good people are there, we just have to fight to make it the safe, welcoming space it should be.


PD: So, what are you working on at the moment?

HR: We are hard at work on our new EP – kicking everything off first with our new single, ‘Missing Out (Again)’ out on the 3rd March.


PD: Where can we learn more about you and buy your music/merch online?

HR: I’m @hollysounds on all the socials, but you can also find us at

Holly Rees links:
Band/Artist location – Newcastle Upon Tyne, UK
Website – Facebook – You Tube – Soundcloud – Bandcamp – Merch – Patreon –
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