Holly Arrowsmith – Blue Dreams: 13th Floor New Song Of The Day

Holly Arrowsmith releases moving Americana single, Blue Dreams, completing her trilogy of deeply personal tracks from her upcoming album, also entitled Blue Dreams, scheduled for release on 26 July 2024 on Leather Jacket Records.

Here is the blurb with more:

Holly ArrowsmithHolly’s storytelling in ‘Blue Dreams‘ explores her experience of first-time parenthood, her honest narrative and intimate vocals caressing the song’s imagery into the ether. Although these moments are very much her own, they are profoundly understood by many others. Holly says, “I was a first-time parent in the middle of a pandemic, surviving in those early days of chronic sleep deprivation. I realised I had never heard a song about this transition, especially about how hard it can be in those first months when you are so exhausted and trying to work it all out. I felt this huge burden of responsibility, bringing life into such a turbulent world.” Finding solace in community, Holly sought refuge in conversation with other people. A repetition of themes emerged: loneliness, worry, exhaustion, loss of identity, evolution, awe, deep love, protectiveness, responsibility. “I wanted to show a real domestic scene, not a glorified one. The often invisible work of Mothers, especially. Those messy, imperfect, sometimes lonely, tender and mundane days with your beautiful baby, time in suspension – for a time.”

‘Blue Dreams’ begins with multi-tracked acoustic guitar, followed by the warmth resonance of Holly’s vocals creating an Americana groove reminiscent of early 1970s Neil Young. Holly skillfully paints a narrative depicting the challenges of retaining your sense of self that is suddenly and unexpectedly consumed by new parenthood. The scenarios are familiar, the ending uplifting.

Holly’s journal of musical ideas is teeming with words and phrases, jotted down as they bloom. “The two words ‘Blue Dreams’ were so beautiful to me that I wrote them down for safe keeping. Sometimes a song just springs from two words like this, and the meaning is revealed in the process.”

Holly’s innate and honed songwriting talents were celebrated in May, the second time she has taken home the coveted APRA Country Music Song of the Year; on this occasion, Holly’s song ‘Desert Dove’, also on the upcoming Blue Dreams album, nabbed the award.

Produced by Tom Healy (Marlon Williams, Bic Runga), and accompanied by an all-star cast of New Zealand musicians (Cass Basil, Anita Clark, Alex Freer), ‘Blue Dreams’ transports us through the essence of early parenthood isolation to a hopeful and positive familial future.

‘Blue Dreams‘ is available globally via all streaming platforms on Thursday 20 June 2024.

Holly Arrowsmith


The music video for ‘Blue Dreams’ was shot on film in the beautiful Mackenzie Country of Southern Aotearoa. The wide-open spaces are a contrast to domestic life which can feel constricting at times. Under the direction of Naomi Haussman and Si Moore, Holly wades into an icy cold pond of swans to take a dip in mid-winter; maybe it was a baptism, which becoming a parent is.

Blue Dreams (Single):
Holly Arrowsmith: Acoustic Guitar, Vocals
Tom Healy: Pedal Steel
Anita Clark: Strings
Cass Basil: Bass
Alex Freer: Drums, Percussion
Mastered by Alex Gordon, Abbey Road

Blue Dreams (Music Video):
Director/ Producer: Naomi Haussman
DOP: Si Moore
Featuring: Holly Arrowsmith
Makeup, Wardrobe, Art Dept: Steph Arrowsmith

About Holly Arrowsmith:

Born on the high desert in Santa Fe New Mexico and raised in the mountains of Southern New Zealand, multi award-winning songwriter Holly Arrowsmith is both poet and storyteller. With the conviction that the deeply personal is also the universal, Arrowsmith’s lyrics orbit around what it means to be human, and offer up prayer-like responses to our most intimate struggles.

A leader in New Zealand’s contemporary Folk and Alt-Country movement, Holly’s sound pays homage to tradition without being too reverential. She embodies Americana through her mastery of vocal dynamics, and nuanced lyrics, creating a gorgeous sonic portrait of life’s ups and downs, real emotion and optimism, a baptism by sparks. Holly shape-shifts from powerful to intimate with ease.

Holly has won the hearts of music lovers close to home and abroad, touring throughout Aotearoa, Australia, and North America, and sharing stages with Sixto Rodriguez, CW Stoneking, Tami Neilson, Jessica Pratt, Nadia Reid, Marlon Williams and Tiny Ruins.

NPR described her music as ‘Utterly beautiful, anchored by a voice that pulls you close and cancels the noise outside.’ In 2020 she was awarded the APRA Country Song of the Year (Slow Train Creek), after receiving the prestigious Tui Award for Folk Album of the Year in 2017 for her opus For The Weary Traveller. In 2024 Holly was awarded the APRA Country Music Song of the Year for 2023’s Desert Dove, continuing to release expertly crafted music.

If a great song can act as a mirror for the listener’s own inner landscape, then this is songwriting at its finest.

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