Q&A Scene: Freya Josephine Hollick

Tell us about your new single/album/tour?

During October, our lovely friends from Texas, Robert Ellis, Geoffrey Muller and Tank Lisenbe, were out to tour and play at Out On The Weekend. They came in to the studio with us and laid down the tune ‘Pearly Gates of the Landfill’. It’s a fun, rollicking, weird song about a date I went on to the tip shop.

Though the guys have headed back to texas, I’m still in the studio with a bunch of different local and interstate musicians, putting down the rest of the new record.

I’m really looking forward to it being out in the world, it’s definitely a step away from the traditionalist sound of that first album I put out, The Unceremonious Junking of Me. All my music stems from folk music, as does all music full stop, the roots are still there, but it was time for me to explore some further reaching influences, to experiment with styles and sounds I had long been wanting to explore.

The upcoming tour is really just an opportunity for me to get to a few more places across the country with the full band, for more people to hear what we are doing, it sometimes doesn’t translate as a duo act.


What’s your favourite work at this point in time?

My favourite work of my own?

The thing I’m most excited about is a track I just put down with Roger Bergodaz, Jacob McGuffie and Oscar Henfrey. It’s one I wrote entitled ‘Like A Dog Upon A Bone’. We tumbled down the track of blending funk and country, and I couldn’t be happier.


Tell us a quick, on the road or studio, anecdote…

One that springs to mind is, myself, and a few others were driving back from Sydney overnight to make it back for a show the following day, and we had been driving for hours, we were about 3 hours out of Melbourne and we blew a tyre in the rental car, in the rain. Thankfully Tom and Mitch changed the tyre and it was a full sized spare. I’m sure I have more interesting stories than this, but it was probably the most full on night of driving we’ve had on the road so far.

What, or who, inspires you?

Mostly Al Green, Ann Peebles, Betty Davis, Allen Toussaint, Dolly Parton, Bill Frisell. The list of musicians that inspire me is much longer but these are my go tos at the moment.

Which song do you wish you wrote?

I wish I wrote Unchained Melody.

How would you describe your sound in food form and why?

What is something that has a whole lot of flavours that shouldn’t work together but they do and its amazing and you can’t get enough?

Maybe some kind of Mexican fusion food. Definitely vegetarian though.


What’s next for you?

I keep saying it and I think I’ll probably jinx myself, but it has always been my dream to get to America. I love American music, and South American Music, so for me I hope to tour through the states and down through Panama, Colombia, Cuba etc.

What’s your scene?

I don’t think I necessarily belong to a scene. I just like good music, whatever style it is, and friendly people.

Freya Josephine Hollick

finished 2017 with her new E.P. Don’t Mess With The Doyenne, a new single Pearly Gates Of The Landfill, recorded with Robert Ellis and The Perfect Strangers, received three Age Music Victoria Award nominations, a grant from Creative Victoria and toured with Justin Townes Earle, plus festival appearances at Nannup Music Festival, Boogie Festival, Gumball, Broadbeach Country Music Festival, Gympie Music Muster, Kyneton Music Festival, Dorrigo Folk and Bluegrass Festival, Out On The Weekend and Queenscliff Music Festival as well as other high profile supports. This February and March, Hollick and her band will embark on an east coast tour. Bringing blues and honky tonk goodness that transports you back to early Appalachia, through wartime romance, the golden era of country music and into a cosmic hootenanny as she crisscrosses across Victoria, NSW and Queensland.

Drawing inspiration from the likes of Bill Frisell, Betty Davis, Ann Peebles and Bob Wills, among many others, Hollick’s live shows encapsulate a multifaceted approach to what no longer can be pigeon holed as country music. Hollick forged her career on a love of the Carter Family and the Appalachian, but while they still make up the skeleton of her songwriting, they’re decorated in layers of the glamorous and of the lowdown. Her music is sliding and changing. She encompasses the resurgent cosmic country of the US, moving in the land of Hiss Golden Messenger and Sturgill Simpson, the flavours of childhood idols in Al Green and Etta James, yet still revering the old time and blues music she learned from as a teenager in Ballarat.

But there’s more still in her odyssey. Latin rhythms and bossa nova. Funk and jazz. She’s changing guitar tunings, bringing in some Wurlitzer and Rhodes. She’s no longer yearning for a lost love, rather claiming her space as a woman on a mission to exist in her own art, to make her own music as she feels fit, and to separate herself from the mimicry of mainstream. A single mum from the Victorian Goldfields, Hollick is on a journey to give the metaphorical middle finger to previous failings, and to bring her impeccable songwriting to audiences across Australia.

With a voice that floats between Maybelle Carter, Dolly Parton and Skip James, Freya Josephine Hollick is a lady not to be missed. Catch her at a venue near you soon.

15th Feb : Leadbelly, Sydney NSW
16th Feb : Stag & Hunter Mayfield, NSW
23rd Feb : Bridge Hotel Castlemaine VIC
24th Feb : Northcote Social Club, Melbourne, VIC
2nd March : Bison Bar, Nambour, QLD
3rd March (arvo) : The Triffid, Brisbane, QLD
3rd March (evening) : Lefty’s Old Time Music Hall, Brisbane QLD
4th March (arvo) : Brisbane Powerhouse, Bris, QLD
15th March : MEMO, St Kilda, VIC
24th March: Spotted Mallard, Melbourne, VIC

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Mandy is a music photographer & writer. She runs Mandy Hall Media, which includes Photography, Social Media marketing, PR & Graphic Design for the music industry. She is also a web developer - she created and supports this website.