Chris Holm is an acoustic folk blues & country musician based in Minneapolis, Minnesota. A fingerstyle guitar picker and harmonica player, Chris channels the high-spirited liveliness of Charley Patton, thumping on his suitcase drum, attacking his guitar strings with abandon, and shouting along in a gravelly howl, later to channel the lonesome sounds of a weeping slide guitar and a blue yodel.
Despite his Northern Minnesota roots, Chris’ has formed in intimate connection with the music of the American South. Born and raised in a small community near the Headwaters of the Mississippi River, the river’s musical heritage has made a strong impression on Chris throughout his life. Raised on the music of Hank Williams, Johnny Cash, Bob Dylan, Flatt & Scruggs, The Beatles, and Creedence Clearwater Revival, he eventually dug into the music that inspired those great artists and discovered a deep appreciation for country blues and hillbilly country music. Sprinkles of his Scandinavian heritage add a unique flavor to his music for a sound that’s both old and familiar yet fresh and original.
You may also catch Chris fronting his roots rock & roll band The Fattenin’ Frogs and psychedelic blues rock duo Heatwave & Landman. Chris formerly has performed with Hazel Strange, The Julie Puppets, The Stone Pages, and The 4onthefloor.
Chris teaches harmonica, guitar, banjo, and bass guitar at Twin Town Guitars in South Minneapolis.
Chris is available for studio work on harmonica, guitar, bass guitar, banjo, and vocals.
Chris was born and raised in rural Northwestern Minnesota, just north of the Mississippi River Headwaters. Born into a musical family, some of Chris’ earliest memories involved listening to his parents’ 60’s era 45 record collection with his sisters on their Fisher Price record player or being sung to sleep by his father. He developed a reputation as the kid who was always humming a tune. But a love of sports above all else, especially baseball and golf, led his early forays into music to quick deaths. Piano lessons, a stint on the trombone in junior high band, and a couple of attempts at learning guitar quickly fell by the wayside in favor of pitching against the barn wall or hitting golf balls in the yard. But by late high school, Chris had discovered his Dad’s old Beatles, Creedence Clearwater Revival, Rolling Stones and Eagles records and finally picked up the guitar for good. His dad showed him some chords and his grandma bought him his first guitar and he set off to learn to play it.
Though Chris began writing songs from the start, he was content to be a casual picker and once a year performer in the Clearbook, Minnesota USO show put on by his mother until his sister Jamie, who’d been living in Los Angeles, came back for Christmas when he was 26 years old and played some songs she had written. Chris dropped out of graduate school and moved out to Los Angeles to start a band with Jamie. They became regulars on the Los Angeles open mic circuit and met Greg DeFuria. Together, the three of them formed an acoustic folk rock trio, The Westgoing Zax, and played a few gigs around Hollywood. Chris & Jamie eventually decided to go electric and moved to Minneapolis to form a new band, Hazel Strange. The band put out one album in 2006 before Jamie left to join nationally touring all-girl band, Sick of Sarah. After short stints in The Stone Pages and The Julie Puppets, Chris became a founding member of The 4onthefloor in late 2008. Around the same time, he set out to put together a band of his own where he could sing lead vocals for the first time and explore his newly discovered love of the blues. The Fattenin’ Frogs were formed in early 2009. Chris began performing solo acoustic shows around 2012, playing old blues and country songs. In 2014, Chris left The 4onthefloor to focus on The Fattenin’ Frogs and also to begin working on a blues rock trio, Heatwave & Landman with Mark Larson, whom he’d played with in Hazel Strange, The Stone Pages, and The 4onthefloor.
Chris released his solo debut album, The Trains Don’t Run Here Anymore in early 2015 and second solo album, Oh These Hard Times in 2016.