A few years ago, we did a who is HollyHood written by POPGHs younger writer Joe Connor (now 15). I thought it was time to get back in her head for a refresher!
1.) So we need to refer to you as Dr. HollyHood now from what I hear. What degrees do you currently have and what do you have planned in regards to any future education?
Whew! My degrees include: Bachelor of Business Administration in Computer Information Systems, Master of Business Administration in Management Information Systems, Master of Science in Information Systems & Technology (Usability Studies), and Doctor of Science in Information Systems & Communications. I’ve also just started the dissertation process for a Doctor of Education in Higher and Postsecondary Education (should be complete by summer 2015). That’s a lot…After this last one, I’m done! Unless I go to bartending school or something haha.
2.) Often times my day job cross paths with people I know in the music scene. As a teacher, has this created and conflict for you working with students in the classroom and the same students in the music scene?
Not at all. Sometimes it actually helps bridge a gap. I’ve even had students who have asked me for advice regarding their music. One of the students I had a few years ago still sends me his music and asks for my feedback. He’s a producer by the name of Tay Pro. It’s cool to see how he’s grown in his craft.
3.) You have done several events this past year that had been more unique than some of the other events in the scene. The all female showcase, Battle for the buck, PUMAs, ect. Which event from this past year are you most proud of and why?
Even though the Pittsburgh Underground Music Awards (PUMAs) was bigger, it’s a tough choice between the all-female showcase (PMS) and the PUMAs. I was really proud of PMS because it was a chance to showcase some of the awesome female talent that we have here. Lots of times when there is an event, there might only be one or two female performers. I think we tend to get left out more often than we should. Also, there was a female DJ and all the event sponsors were female. The next one is planned for 3/21/14! And no doubt I was SUPER proud of the way PUMAs went. People still seem to have a bad taste in their mouths regarding the former Pittsburgh Hip Hop Awards. Mista Scrap and I wanted to give everyone a nice event to showcase talent and also recognize people for the work they put in during the previous year. There were some things that could have been done differently. But overall, the event was fair everyone had a good time. It’s great to be able to give back to so many people at once.
4.) You recently got connected with Most Wanted Fine Arts from the various shows and friendships you built there. What can we look to see from you and this relationship?
One of my first projects with them as resident artist will be a series of hip hop workshops. I’m working on the details right now. It will be more geared toward people who have an interest in hip-hop and want to be involved or learn more about it in general. So basically, your grandma could come and she would fit right in.
5.) You have may brands that you are apart of. Can you outline for us what each brand is involved with and the importance of each identity?
ihateholly.com – My blog! I tend to neglect it, but it’s near and dear to my heart. I post random thoughts and rants when I have the moment, which is probably not as often as it should be. I’ll get to it.
hater gang – It’s a movement. The idea is that it’s okay to keep it real with people without being a “hater.” That word has been overused and abused for way too long. I decided to take it on to kind of say f*** it, if I’m hating by telling you my honest opinion, then I’ll be that. People seriously need to re-examine the true definition of that word.
Proud To Be Local – Event series that gives local artists (and sometimes an outta towner or two) the opportunity to display their talent. I believe this is one of the longest running hip-hop event series in the city.
Pink Plephant – Entertainment company that wants to specialize in artist development, specifically for female artists
HollyHood – The artist…need I say more? Ha!
Am i missing any? – I don’t know. You tell me lol.
6.) In a given day, do you are you called “amber” or “holly” most often?
In any given day, I’m most often called Holly or Mommy. Amber is lost and lonely somewhere and probably needs attention. She might even be dying of starvation. Someone should go check on her. Haha
7.) So you are starting off the new year strong with a new degree, any other major plans in the near future that we can look out for in 2014?
My major plans include helping to keep the Pittsburgh hip-hop movement alive, try some new ventures (maybe), not get high blood pressure (again!), and work on finishing this second doctorate (yikes!). But also, I’m planning to bring back the I Love Lyrics (ILL) Showcase at some point…maybe after PUMAs. Not sure yet. I’ve also talked about becoming an ordained minister and starting the church of Hater Gang. Haha j/k.
8.) I caught you on the radio a few times in 2013. I have to say that you seem to be a natural at it. Well spoken, good stories, and an even flow of entertainment. Is there a petition out there that we can sign to get more Holly on the radio?
Ha! I wish! If anyone has that info, holla at ya girl! However, you will soon be able to hear me on air down at The Plug (used to be Carson Street Media). I will be doing a live segment called #ihateradio. It will be available at mixlr.com/theplug. More info to come!
9.) You had done some dating experiments recently with online dating websites and had some ideas around a dating show. Have you learned much from your experiment?
Eh…I learned that people are strange. Not that I didn’t already know that. It just confirmed that I’m not the crazy one lol. Oh! It also confirmed that many people don’t know what to say and when. That’s all I’ll say about that.
10.) Whats the best and worst pickup line someone has tried to use on you?
Believe it or not…no one tries to ‘pick me up.’ I’m dead serious lol. I usually have to be the aggressor. Sounds like this should be a topic on #ihateradio.
11.) Other than being a parent, teaching, throwing shows, putting together benefits, being an artist, doing burlesque, WHAT ELSE do you do as a hobby that you enjoy!
One of the things that I enjoy the most is being at home alone playing loud music, drinking wine (like an old person), lighting incense, and just chilling. I like to travel when I can but I’m a baby and usually get home sick after about 2 days.
12.) Oh what a minute! Did i just say burlesque!?!? Tell us about that and feel free to (insert picture here!)
Smdh @ you! Lol…Yes, in November I graduate from Steel City Burlesque Academy under the direction of Macabre Noir and Lilith Deville. My stage name is Holly B. Hayve. I’d seen Lita D’Vargas perform a couple times at an event called Behind the Mask and I thought she was absolutely beautiful. Also, I went to an event called Kabaret Vulgare last year…sort of a freak show kinda thing…and met Macabre Noir. Shes’ creepy. She’s stunning. And I love watching her. I was told that she was going to have burlesque classes at Most Wanted and I decided I wanted to do that! So I did. I signed up and the rest is history (pic is attached lol). What’s awesome about burlesque is that it’s body friendly and really gives you a sense of empowerment, no matter your body type. I met some awesome people through burlesque such as Smokin McQueen (who is a HUGE fan of Ice Cream & Moscato!) and Paco Fish, and I’m glad to have done it. I’ve also recently joined a new burlesque troupe called Steel City Cabaret.
13.) POPGH stands for People of Pittsburgh Going Hard. How do you go hard for your city?
I go hard for my city by doing all that I can to help support, critique, motivate, and mentor the artists that I have access to. I stay up late and devote probably WAY too much time to this, but hey, I love it even though it doesn’t always seem to love me back (financially at least lol). Also, I don’t like to take no for an answer. I do my best to show these venue owners that the hip hop scene here is not negative. We are like a big dysfunctional family, but we really don’t mean any harm. So when someone says we can’t do something somewhere, I make it happen somewhere else. Period. Point blank. The end.
give shout outs / add anything else you wish to say!
Omg…Where do we start here??…s/o to Mista Scrap, 1156 (Beth, Danielle, & Heather), Nina & Jason at Most Wanted Fine Art, my security guard Jazz (lol #TAGUNIT), all the Shadow Lounge orphans, the ladies that inspired me the most last year (Macabre Noir, Phat Man Dee, Vie Boheme), all the ladies from Steel City Burlesque Academy 2013 graduating class, the ladies of Steel City Cabaret, my two new favorite under 21 artists (Patt Moorby and KeKe Lyrics), definitely YOU! for counseling me and talking me down from many roofs (lol), and all of Hater Gang! Honestly, there are too many people to name here. I’m very grateful for all the love and support I get for the things that I do. This list could go on for days. <3