» Interviews » Greg Holden on his groundbreaking song “Boys in the Street” and new album ‘Chase the Sun’
Greg Holden on his groundbreaking song “Boys in the Street” and new album ‘Chase the Sun’ Kristina Valencia interviewing Greg Holden

Greg Holden is truly a remarkable artist.  When you listen to the songs on his new album, Chase the Sun, you can hear the voice and words of a man who has learned from every single thing that he has experienced – good and bad.

Written just after his life-changing trip to India, Chase the Sun is an honest, thought-provoking and inspiring record.  His latest single, “Boys in the Street” is an emotional and heartbreakingly beautiful story about the growth of a boy’s relationship with his father.

Just before his set opening for Ingrid Michaelson in Seattle last week, I had a wonderful conversation with Greg.  I can’t wait for you to hear Greg’s songs, he is one of a kind! Please enjoy our conversation and photos by the very talented Jason Tang below!

Hi Greg! Congratulations on your “Boys in the Street” video premiere today!
Thank you, thank you very much!

It’s a very deep song.
Yeah, I’m not one to write light songs. I’m very influenced by songwriters who say something important and make you think a bit harder about songs – so that’s what I’ve always tried to do with my music.

I like that you write really honest songs.
Thank you. Yeah, I try to – it’s the only way I can do it.

What’s the process like for you – do you just sit down and let the words come out?
For that particular one, yeah. That one I feel, in the least pretentious way, like I was meant to write it. I’ve got three songs in my career that have happened that way – where I’ve just sat there and it’s fallen out in like 20 minutes and it’s just happened really fast. All the other ones, I’ve labored over for periods of time, but that particular one happened really, really quickly and at a time that when I really needed that song. I really needed something like that.

How about the rest of Chase the Sun? What did you do differently this time around?
The difference this time around was that I disappeared and I wrote the album without showing anybody anything. Usually, what I’ve done is I’ve traveled around and I’ve played the songs on tour and made YouTube videos of them and kind of “road tested” them. I didn’t really do that this time.

The whole album is inspired by a trip I took around India that gave me a new perspective on my life. I came home from this trip and felt like I needed to reflect on what had happened because it was so intense. I just holed away, didn’t go on tour and I started writing the album mostly by myself and with some close friends of mine. Then I just went and recorded it.

I recorded this whole set of songs that no one had heard and that was such a frightening prospect for me because when you put them on the internet, people either like them or they don’t and you get an idea of which ones are popular and which ones aren’t. This one was like a whole new thing thrown out into the universe so I was terrified.

2015.06.17: Greg Holden @ The Paramount Theatre, Seattle, WA

I bet! You were releasing independently for awhile and now you’re with Warner Brothers…
Yes. I made this independently. I made this with my own money. I produced with Greg Wells in Los Angeles, who is an amazing producer. I did it with the intention of then finding a home for it – a record label. I didn’t want to release it independently again because it was just too much money and I’d already spent all my money making it. I decided that I wanted to make the album the way I wanted to make it without any outside influence and then go and find the right home for it. So I shopped around to different labels and finally found Warner Brothers, who seem to be on board with the way I wanted to do things.

They seem to be really great!
They are. They really are. They’re a label that really cares about art and about someone’s career and not just one hit. They’re treating this like a career thing – hopefully – I’m saying that now and I hope I’m still saying it in ten years.

Well I’m sure you will be! You recently co-wrote with Jukebox The Ghost for a song on their record, how did that come about?
Yeah, I’ve written with Ben a bunch of times! Me and Ben have been really close friends for a while. The first song we wrote together was “The Great Unknown,” which is on their new album. It was such an organic experience, we had never written before. We had some lunch and then we went to my studio and we wrote the song in a few hours. We were like, “that was really easy, let’s do it again!” And then we wrote three more songs together. “Great Unknown” made it onto their album, which is great. I’m a huge fan of their band. Even if I wasn’t friends with them, I would be a fan of their band. They’re good guys.

They are! They’re super nice. Okay, last question…if you had to choose your two go-to, life-changing albums what would you choose?
All Things Must Pass by George Harrison.
…and Damn The Torpedoes by Tom Petty.


For more about Greg Holden, please visit his official site.  Also, see more behind the scenes interview photos on our Facebook page!

Leave a Reply

(* required)
Email Address
( * required - will not be published)
Web Site
(* required)