On The Rise: Curb's Steve
Holy Shines With 'Blue Moon'
By CARLA HAY-Billboard Magazine
Steve Holy is anything but an overnight sensation. Nearly 18 months
after the release of his debut album, Blue Moon (Curb Records), he has hit
big with his first No. 1 country single, "Good Morning Beautiful," and
breakthrough sales for the album. Although Holy's three previous singles
("Don't Make Me Beg," "Blue Moon," and "The Hunger") earned respectable
places in the top 30 of the Hot Country Singles & Tracks chart, "Good
Morning Beautiful" has hit the proverbial home run by topping the chart.
Holy believes that airplay for "Good Morning Beautiful" (which was
featured in the movie Angel Eyes) has been the catalyst in jump-starting
sales for the album. "The success of the other three singles really opened
the door, but having a No. 1 song has taken things to a new level."
Released in October 2000, Blue Moon did not enter the Heatseekers chart
until a year later, debuting at No. 44 in the Nov. 3, 2001, issue. The
album steadily ascended the chart, reaching No. 1 in the Jan. 26 issue.
Blue Moon attained Heatseekers Impact status when it rose from No. 120 to
No. 97 on The Billboard 200 in the Feb. 2 issue. Meanwhile, Blue Moon has
become a top 10 hit on the Top Country Albums chart.
" 'Good Morning Beautiful' has been one of our most-requested songs,"
says Rick McCracken, assistant PD/music director of country station WSOC
Charlotte, N.C. "Steve Holy is very talented and likeable, and this is the
kind of song that appeals to men and women." The video for "Good Morning
Beautiful" has been getting heavy rotation on Country Music Television and
Great American Country.
The combination of radio and video airplay has been the main reason why
people are recently discovering Holy's album, says Cliff Gerken, music
buyer for Ernest Tubb Record Shop's Broadway location in Nashville.
Curb VP of marketing Jeff Tuerff says Holy's current success is "a
culmination of all the team efforts from Curb. We experienced a lot of
growing pains with this record, and we're starting to see great results.
"We started off with five core markets: Atlanta, Dallas, Cincinnati,
Louisville [Ky.], and Phoenix," Tuerff continues. "When we analyzed the
airplay [for Holy] in those markets, they had immediate reactions. We then
supported those markets and tried to maximize the airplay, and we grew it
from there to other markets."
A native of Dallas, Holy paid his dues in the '90s by performing in the
Texas area. His break came in 1993, when he placed first among 500
hopefuls in a talent contest organized by the Johnnie High Country Revue
and joined the revue's cast. The Arlington, Texas-based talent show has
been a launching pad for such artists as LeAnn Rimes. By 1999, Holy was
the opening act for Rimes and was signed to Curb. (Ironically, Rimes'
father and former manager, Wilbur Rimes, produced Blue Moon.)
Holy, who now splits his time between Nashville and Dallas, notes: "I
don't want people to label me. The majority of my influences I would
consider traditional country, but I feel closer to the music of the '50s
and '60s than the music of the '80s. I'm not necessarily into story songs.
I'm into the simplicity of the music and melodies that express the same
thing as the lyrics."
Holy is now on a U.S. tour booked by Nashville-based Monterey Artists.
He is managed by Lyle Walker Management in Dallas. Holy's songs are
published by Curb Music (ASCAP).
Tuerff says the record company will emphasize the romantic theme of
"Good Morning Beautiful" in Valentine's Day promotions for the song on
radio, TV, and the Internet. Meanwhile, Holy says, "The recognition has
been great, but one of my goals is that I would [still] like to be doing
this for a living in 10 years.
Check out Steve Holy's new tour dates on the Tour Schedules link above.