INTERVIEW: Old Friend Greg Holden Talks “On the Run,” Touring with Butch Walker
When we launched New England Sounds just over two years ago, our first published article was a live review of Greg Holden’s performace at Cafe 939 at Berklee College of Music in January 2016. At that time, Holden was touring in support of his third studio album, Chase the Sun.
Now, Greg Holden is back on the scene with some brand new material, earlier this month he debuted his newest single “On the Run,” Holden described the single, saying: “ ‘On The Run’ is one of a few songs that was bouncing around in my head when it came to the question of what to lead with after three years on the dark side of the moon. Ultimately, this song felt like the most authentic, whilst at the same time not being so typically subject heavy that I would scare my listeners away. I’ll save that for the second single…”
We recently got a chance to chat with Holden about his new single, and his upcoming tour with the legendary producer Butch Walker who produced Holden’s latest single.
Last month you released your new single, “On the Run”. Can you tell us a little bit about the story behind this song?
I wrote this song as an apology, obviously. Not to one specific person, but as a sort of blanket “my bad” to anyone I may have hurt over the years spent traveling, boozing, touring, misbehaving etc. Following your “dream” is a pretty difficult thing to do if you don’t put yourself front and center, and I’m certain there have been times where that has pissed people off, or even hurt people. Nowadays, I’m a lot less self-centered (I hope), but it felt very therapeutic to send this apology out into the world.
Is the song a good indication of what’s to come music wise? Is there a new full length album in the works?
Sure yeah. I’m honestly just working on whatever feels inspiring to me at the moment. I’m trying to stay clear of what I’ve done before, because I’ve done it, but I’m also trying to stay away from what may or may not be expected of me. I’ve always found that stifling, it really kills my creative mojo… It’s difficult these days though, because whether we mean to or not, we tend to create to share, then get immediate feedback, so what people think will ultimately affect what we create. I have a new single called “The Power Shift” coming out soon, and there’s also an EP in the works. Hopefully it’ll find its way out into the world by autumn.
You’ve been writing music for so many years now. What’s something new you’ve tried lately with in the writing/recording process? Or do you feel your songwriting process has become a steady pattern?
It’s always been a fluid thing. Steadiness would be the death of me, I’d just get bored. I used to write lyrics on the end of bars, then add music and melody later. Then I started sitting at my guitar and coming up with melodies first. Nowadays, because I’m doing a lot more production, I tend to sit in my studio and knock out riff ideas, drum beats, chord progressions, and then lyrically write whatever seems to suit the music I came up with that day. It’s always different, and never consistent, unfortunately.
You’ve announced shows with Butch Walker, who worked on “On the Run” with you as well. How are you planning these sets? Will you be road-testing new material, bringing back some oldies, covers, etc.
That is correct. Butch is the best. I’m excited for that run. I think I’ll be doing a mix of the two. A lot of the cities we’re playing in, I’ve played before, so I’ll throw a few classics into what will likely be me, as you say, road testing new material.
With the new single out, the first new music in about three years, what are some focuses/goals for you over these next few months as you prep for those fall shows?
Staying alive and staying inspired.