“This song is the result of someone like me trying to function in corporate society. I woke up one day and realized that no matter how hard I try to conform, I am not meant for that world. I am meant to create (whether it is for myself or for others). I had this crazy sound in my head that dripped with dirt and disgust, yet clean and precise… kind of how I was feeling.”
HOLDN is intentional with her songwriting, and her production too. “The 808’s are meant to make it have a nasty edge. The giant foot stomps on the downbeats in the chorus are meant to symbolize structure and ‘fitting to the mold’. Every sound put into this song was thought out and fit to the aesthetic of creating a sonic image… This is the first song I’ve ever had a production credit on that I have released under one of my own projects.”
Hear “Loser” below:
(Cannot believe that is the first record she has production credits on! So good.)
But still, there’s always a good story behind any collaboration record. She said, “I was in the studio and Lupo started showing me some projects he was working on. That’s when I heard Marcaux for the first time. I immediately looked him up on Instagram and saw this video he did with just himself, a mic, and a sample pad, captioned “Untitled”. At this point, I had a blank bridge with an EDM break and heard his voice in my mind.” Now that is what you call the law of attraction.
But this girl is bold and willing to learn a new skill and take a risk. Like learning production software. “About 2 years ago, I had an HP laptop with Audacity. I made sounds for beats by opening soda cans and hitting the body of my guitar with my hand and adding reverb to it through my guitar pedal board because the reverb in audacity SUCKED. I couldn’t afford anything else. I was 19 and making about $200 a week working street team events for radio stations just to learn more about the industry and how it worked.”
Now she produces with Logic from her bedroom. When she happens upon something she doesn’t yet know how to do, it’s time to phone a friend. ” I have amazing, talented friends who I can call up and be like, “Hey, I don’t know how to do this and I know you do. Can you walk me through that really quick?”. And if they’re unavailable, I have the handy-dandy internet. Speak it into existence and of course, work work work work work.”
When we first talked to Gina in 2017, we were struck by her boldness, so this time around we asked about what the harder side of being an indie artist looked like.
“The hardest part is always the most obvious thing: doing everything myself. There isn’t one part of HOLDN that I don’t have my hands in. And I like it that way. I don’t want anyone telling me what to do, but I always appreciate constructive criticism from people with more experience than me. I am never arrogant or defiant when it comes to that. I always want to learn, but I sure as hell don’t want anyone calling me up one day and telling me “you’re talented and all, but we’re going to need you to lose 15+ pounds.”