Published on September 11th, 2014 | by Ballard Lesemann


Metronome Charleston Anniversary: Lindsay Holler’s Western Polaroids

How can one not fall in love with the sounds and many moods of singer-songwriter Lindsay Holler’s music? The versatile vocalist and guitarist has been cranking out a variety of mesmerizing and soulful original works for more than 10 years, and she’s got a plenty more up her sleeve.

Holler will share the Tin Roof stage this weekend as part of Metronome Charleston’s second anniversary party. Her eclectic backing band, the Western Polaroids, will feature drummer Stuart White, guitarist Conor Donohue, and one or two special guests.

Holler initially established herself in Charleston in the mid 2000s as a solo performer and songsmith. In addition to the Western Polaroids, she led such projects as Oh Ginger and Matadero (alongside drummer Ron Wiltrout, keyboardist Sam Sfirri, and bassist George Baerreis).

Metronome Charleston caught up with Holler this week.

Metronome Charleston: It’s been a year since you performed at our first anniversary bash. What are the top five life lessons you’ve learned — as a musician/songwriter — since that gig?

Lindsay Holler: Have patience, focus, trust yourself, know when to walk away; it’ll get better.

Metronome Charleston: Who will be joining you at this week’s show, and how did the lineup come together?

Lindsay Holler: Conor Donohue will be on guitar and backup vocals, Stuart White will be on the drums, and we’ll have a guest on bass! Conor and I have been playing each other’s shows for the last couple of months, which has been a lot of fun. We’ve be able to focus a little more on the songwriting and arranging aspects of things, which has been great. I’ve been playing with Stu for years, so that’s a no-brainer. I’m so grateful when he answers my calls!


Stuart White and Lindsay Holler at the Tin Roof (photo by Jessica Mickey)

Metronome Charleston: With various members tag-teaming duties, it seems like the Western Polaroids have been your most flexible and constant musical project over the last few years. Is it fair to say that the ever-changing ensemble consistently reflects your most personal material?

Lindsay Holler: I was actually thinking about this the other day. The “Polaroids” reference is good because each show is a little bit of a snapshot, and like most snapshots, they are never the same. The Polaroids’ lineup tends to change frequently, and maybe I’m winking at that a little bit with the name. I like the option to throw in a little twang whenever I want. As far as the Polaroids reflecting my most personal material, I’m not sure about that one. Maybe?

Metronome Charleston: Please update us on the status of Matadero. Are there plans for new music, gigs, recordings, etc. in the next year?

Lindsay Holler: Oh, my sweet, sweet Matadero. George, Ron, Sam, and I love this band. I wonder if it’s like the boy you can’t have? Sam is back up at school in Montreal, starting his final year.  Hopefully, there will be a show around the end of the year holidays, when Sam’s back for a second, on a visit. And then we’ll see what the future holds for Matadero. I’m hoping there’s a future there.

Metronome Charleston: Who are some of the new local and/or out-of-town musicians and songwriters with whom you’ve recently connected and worked?

Lindsay Holler: I’m very excited to start recording a new album this fall with Andy Dixon, who recently moved to Charleston via Chicago. Andy’s got crazy ideas about taking our time and doing a full-length, and I’m jumping on board, head-first. I’ve never worked in a recording situation where there wasn’t a clock hanging over my head, so this will be an exciting creative adventure for me.  I’m really looking forward to it!


Metronome Charleston: How would you describe the state of Charleston’s current original music scene? How is it different from when you first started playing in town?

Lindsay Holler: Man, the quality of music in Charleston is kind of mind-blowing, actually. I’ve hung out with some people who’ve recently moved here, and they’re all asking what’s in the water here? There are so many really really good bands and musicians, in all kinds of different genres. Quality! The support that they all give to each other is so awesome.

I guess things are different from back when I first started playing around, in that information is much more widely available so you’re able to explore other local music outside of your immediate circle.

Metronome Charleston: Song-wise, attitude-wise, and spirt-wise, what might the audience expect from you and the band on Saturday night at the Tin Roof?

Lindsay Holler: I feel like the Western Polaroids are on a slow boil right now … which is going to translate in the set. We’re gearing up for a big fall!

Metronome Charleston: When it comes to booking, organizing, and promoting special theme nights, benefit shows, and local showcases, you’ve worked with friends and colleagues and totally on your own through the years? What expert advice would you give Metronome Charleston when it comes to putting these kind of shows on?

Lindsay Holler: The best advice I can give you is to be prepared for problems and try to be flexible.

Lindsay Holler’s Western Polaroids will share the stage with Scott Dence, the Danielle Howle Band, and Sexbruise? at the Metronome Charleston Anniversary Show on Sat. Sept. 13 at the Tin Roof (1117 Magnolia Road). Showtime is 9 p.m. Admission is $5. Proceeds will benefit the bands, Metronome’s website expenses, and Camp Happy Days.

Look for Matadero’s recent three-song EP online at See for more.



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About the Author

Ballard Lesemann

is a musician and writer. Born and raised in Charleston, S.C., he spent years playing in bands and working for Flagpole Magazine in the bustling music town of Athens, Ga. He returned to his hometown and served more than seven years as the Charleston City Paper's music editor. He's better at drumming than he is at playing guitar.

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