After signing a lucrative deal with premiership team West Ham FC, shortly followed by a debut appearance at Anfield against Liverpool FC, no one would ever imagine that a professional footballer would ever turn his back on the world of sport and find his way onto the big stage performing with Stevie Wonder, Jocelyn Brown, Aswad and Floetry, but that’s what Gavin Holligan did!
Despite making the unlikely transition, and enjoying various touring stints as background vocalist and keyboardist with established names - including Duffy (number 1 smash hit with 'Mercy' 2008), and Gloria Gaynor (legendary singer of disco hit 'I Will Survive'), Gavin became restless with the repetitiveness of it all, and eventually concluded that it was time to develop his own ideas.
The BRIT School graduate slowly detached himself from the session scene and put together a local monthly showcase called 'Chemistry' (guest performers included Katy B, Shola Ama and Jaz Ellington - finalist on 'The Voice' TV series 2012). Meanwhile, Gavin assembled a shop-basement recording studio ‘Brownhouse Music’ in the hope of honing his instinctive songwriting and production skills.
After an extended period of experimentation, Gavin recorded and independently released self produced uptempo song entitled 'Brighter Day', which was picked up by 1xtra DJ Lewis Barker and featured on the ‘BBC introducing’ radio show in 2008.
Gavin swiftly noted that it was mainly his emotive lyrics, spacious arrangements and heartfelt live performances that always seemed to capture his listeners so effortlessly. Consequently, Gavin retreated back to the drawing board to explore a more fitting sound to accompany his unique vocal talent.
While on the journey to finding his own artistic identity, Gavin (born and raised in South London) has been quietly hard at work, penning and composing material for other artists and bands. Notable efforts include; ‘Fly Again' released by female trio 'Stooshe' , which was co-written with song-writer extraordinaire Jo Perry and Incognito lead vocalist Mo Brandis.
Gavin also collaborated with Singer Songwriter Arrow Benjamin, (featured on Naughty Boys number 1 hit single alongside Beyonce in 2015) co-writing & producing his single entitled 'Sirens' which was released in June 2020). in 2019 Gavin co-produced and mixed Luke Smith's Alternative Jazz EP entitled ‘It’s Time’, which was released in Jan 2021, and features musical pioneers such as Roy Ayers (Godfather of Neo Soul) and multi instrumentalist David Mrakpor (Blue Lab Beats).
In 2018, and after years of experimentation, Gavin felt it was time to bring his own music to the world, with the release of a heartfelt song entitled ‘More Than One’. More Than One received tremendous reviews, mainly due to its powerful lyrics and emotive vocal performance. The song was also accompanied with a picture collage Youtube video featuring a string of soul stirring images. Since the release of his heartfelt ballad, Gavins music has been likened to the jazz infused organic instrumentation, behind the warm vocal palette of Grammy award winner Gregory Porter, or perhaps even the fresh spin on yesteryears Rhythm & Blues music, brought to us by the 10x Grammy award winner John Legend.
Gavin was also the featured vocalist on dance DJ Riva Starrs single ‘If I Could Only Be Sure’ (Dec, 2020) which received rave reviews and airplay from the likes of Annie Mac @ BBC Radio 1.
Gavin Holligan could easily be summed up as a 'modern day - classic artist', delivering much of the craftsmanship you would expect to hear from iconic heroes of old. With a rich musical history, potent songs, quality musicianship and an engaging stage presence, you can't help feeling that Gavin Holligan will always offer up his audience something worth waiting for!