Continuing our series of interviews with unsigned and independent acts, we had the opportunity to submit questions to US based Holly Nicole Combs.
1: How did you get started in music?
I got started in music by singing anything my parents played on the radio or songs I heard in musicals. I taught myself to play a few songs by ear on the keyboard and even begged my parents for piano lessons; however, we never could afford it. For the longest time, my hopes of being a musician went wherever dreams go to die, but I ended up working as an elementary school teacher and couldn’t get the students to remember certain things. As a result, I made songs that went to famous jingles on commercials. I did this for a while, but I began to seriously begin song writing after my divorce and the death of my father. I realized life was too short not to follow the songs I have been hearing in my heart my entire life.
2: How would you describe your music?
I do not know how to describe my music, so I decided to create my own genre called Hope Folk. I have been influenced by pop, rock, country, folk, show tunes, classical, opera, and probably many more genres that I am forgetting to name. I love them all so much. Hope folk has heart, humor, honesty, but most importantly, hope. My songs mean so much to me because each of them is a little piece of my heart, mind, and soul.
3: Are you playing any live gigs right now, and what are they like?
I am currently not playing live gigs. I just started this Journey 8 months ago in my bathroom playing guitar and singing, but I hope to begin performing when the album is released.
4: You’re working on your first album right now, talk us through the process of writing and recording
The album I am working on right now is called Confessions from a Bathroom: Happiness is One Flush Away. Since I began this process of playing songs in my bathroom and posting them online, I decided on the title. None of my friends really knew I wrote songs, and then I just shocked some by writing them, posting them, and revealing a lot of personal thoughts and details. In a way, it was a confession of my thoughts and feelings about life following my divorce. All the songs are already written for the album. I will then be driving to Nashville to work with my amazing producer, Ben Travis from Two Cats Studio. Upon my arrival, I will be working and staying at the studio for an entire week laying down my vocals and working with a studio guitarist who will add a little more pizzazz to what I have already written. Ben will discuss his ideas of what else should be added to the tracks, and he will play a rough mix for me. While Ben does all the boring fine-tuning stuff, I will be in Mississippi anxiously awaiting word. He will send me what he has, and if I want anything changed, he will change it. He is so easy to work with and such a nice guy. I feel like I struck gold when he asked me to come to Nashville.
5: When will the album be available?
My album will be available hopefully by the beginning of September. I am so proud of this project. I do not expect a pot of gold at the end of this rainbow, but on my travel down this road, I have made friends with other independent musicians, writers, photographers, videographers, producers, fans, and most importantly, I have made friends with myself. My journey has taught me so much about following my heart, believing in myself, and not giving up even when everyone tells you that you can’t. I am rich with experience, and that is what life is about.