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Musician Spotlight: Dale Hollow

Courtesy of Dale Hollow
Tune into the works of Dale Hollow, country star extrordinaire.

Get your cowboy hat on and your boots ready because rising country star Dale Hollow released his first official album, Hack of the Year, last Friday, Sept. 29.

Hollow released “Big Rig in The Sky” earlier this month to kick off his upcoming music fandom. Declared “relentlessly entertaining” by the Rolling Stone, Hollow is known to embody a combination of Andy Kaufman, a bit of Orville Peck, with a touch of Father John Misty. This mysterious country artist is looking to mark his name on music billboards in the approaching weeks following his debut album.

The album is inspired by country artists from the 60s, 70s and 80s, with a focus on Hollow’s personal experiences, while also incorporating relatable content for his listeners. Hollow mentioned that at the end of the day, money is the unfortunate reality of it all, which some of his songs articulate. However, most of his songs reflect “the earnestness of wanting to be loved and accepted.”

When asked about her favorite type of country music, freshman Frannie Murphy said she gravitates towards country music that is positive and brings a touch of joy with every beat.

“I like when the lyrics have a fun message and it’s easy to dance to,” Murphy said. This is exactly Hollow’s goal in writing songs.

“I just try to make them a little bit goofy or more tongue in cheek,” Hollow said in an interview with The Villanovan.

Freshman and young musician in the Villanovan community Kyle Sonders emphasizes his support for small town music artists when it comes to the genre of country, in comparison to mainstream artists.

“Country artists often produce more authentic music and stray away from the modern pop-country mix that almost takes away any real instrumental work,” Sonders said.

Hollow grew up in Nashville, Tennessee, until recently moving to New York City.

“I thought, why not go to a place that’s continually changing and growing and shrinking and everything in between,” Hollow said.

Just like the city itself, Hollow is constantly moving, growing, and advancing in his career.

Surprisingly, Hollow got into music later in life. As a kid, he was an athlete who dreamed of becoming a basketball star, until he found his passion in music. He participated in the church choir, singing and playing the drums. Hollow said he saw it as a way to “pass the time during a church service.” He got a feel for music and his passions ultimately grew fonder with the sound of music.

He worked at a radio station, interviewing people and working with bands, essentially involving himself in the music world.

“I thought, ‘I could maybe write a song or two,’ and then fast forward to now and I got an album coming out,” Hollow said.

  He turned his career around and has been writing songs for six years now.

While Hollow may be the front line on stage, he has a backing band that has been along for the ride from the beginning. They go by “The Long Con” and simply add to the talent and rhythm put in every song. Christopher Winfrey is on guitar, Dalton Smith is on the drums, Miranda McLaughlin sings backing vocals and Nick Murali plays the keyboard and additional auxiliary sounds.

With a band that was formed only a couple years ago, they only have a couple shows under their belt. However, they have opened for bands and performed for smaller events, finding ways to have their voices heard.

“Putting yourself out there is the necessary first step toward any future in the [music] industry,” Sonders said.

Hollow’s personal connections among other bands and artists have also aided his upbringing to where he is now, releasing songs on music streaming platforms and performing for crowds as big as 1500 people.

“[We are] fortunate enough to say that we’ve been able to run that gauntlet of zero to a bunch of people in such a relatively short amount of time,” Hollow said.

Hollow has big plans for his future music career and he doesn’t plan on slowing down any time soon.

Junior Villanovan Gabi Manganello talked about her support for up and coming artists attempting to make their ambitions a reality.

“If Bruce Springsteen didn’t release his first album, even though nobody knew who he was except for the locals on the Jersey Shore, then we would not have the iconic international rock star that we do today,” Manganello said.

The album release was this Friday, Sept. 29. There was a release show in New York City. The following weekend the band has shows in Nashville, Asheville and Atlanta. What follows is a tour at the end of October through the end of November.

Manganello emphasizes the importance of supporting rising artists and how she values listening to the story being told with every lyric harmonized.

“Small town country singers are the backbone of America,” Manganello said.

This is only the beginning for country star Dale Hollow. For tickets and concert dates, go to for more information and remember to take a listen to Hack of the Year, out now on Spotify.

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