Little Jane & The Pistol Whips
December Artist Spotlight
Little Jane & The Pistol Whips
December Artist Spotlight
It is crazy to think that I am writing the last Artist Spotlight for the 2023 year. For the December Artist Spotlight, I will be sharing a quick personal insight of Ashly Jane Holland which is known by many as “Little Jane”. Little Jane and the Pistol Whips were formed in 2008 and is led by Ashly Jane. The band has released three albums containing original songs written by Ashly Jane.
Ashly Jane was born on April 15th and grew up in Livingston, MT but for the last five years Ashley has been becoming more familiar and building a home in Mesa, AZ during the winters. Many may not know but Tom Brokaw and John Mayer are from the small town of Livingston, MT that is home to less than 10,000 people. Livingston, MT became a centralized point in the Rockies and is the location that the Northern Pacific Railway (NPR) would stop for service on their steam trains before ascending to the Bozeman Pass. Livingston has also become known as the first gateway town to Yellowstone, America’s first national park. While Ashly enjoys the quiet small-town life during the summers, she shifts to the warmer and much busier life in Mesa, AZ. Mesa is the third most populous city in Arizona. On the other hand, Mesa also has numerous parks, golf courses and plenty of beautiful sites.
After graduating from high school in Helena, MT, Ashly Jane furthered her education profile by graduating from a college in Bozeman, MT. Once her bachelor’s degree was obtained, Ashley continued her education by obtaining her Graduate degree at Boise State University in Idaho. All this education has allowed her to help many people in her field of social work. Ashly Jane, we thank you for helping others, it is a very important field.
Ashly Jane started singing prior to high school but during her high school years, she began formally singing. After fine-tuning her sound, the band was formed in 2008. Along with singing, Ashly Jane is also familiar with playing many instruments, like the piano that she took lessons during her middle school years to teaching herself the guitar when she was 26 yrs. of age so she didn’t have to rely on anyone. The guitar is the best way to back up vocals, it is easy to pack around and it applies to most songs.
Speaking of songs, Ashly Jane loves writing songs that lean more towards the Americana style of music; however, you will also hear Little Jane and the Pistol Whips play some country and bluegrass. With her strong love of writing more in the Americana style, you will be able to pick up sounds/influences from the some of the great country artists like Patsy Cline, Loretta Lynn, Hank Williams Sr and even some of the more recent influencers like Alison Krauss. Similar to other songwriters, Ashly writes when the topic comes to mind, but she prefers to write alone and in silence. The “noodling” of words or phrases around to create that perfect word/chord or lyric is easier when there is less distractions.
If there was anyone that Ashly Jane could do a collaboration with, it would be Chris Stapleton. Ashly Jane has followed him since his work with the SteelDrivers and stills love the work he does through both his songwriting and his larger-than-life voice. Ashly Jane’s most inspirational person musically is Gillian Welch. Gillian Welch is an American Folk singer that wrote many songs about her personal life as an adopted child. Ashly Jane also admires the fact that Gillian started her own record label and writes for herself, not what others demand. On the non-musical side of inspiration, Ashly Jane finds the people who have cat rescues in Pet Smart some of the most inspiring people. She appreciates all the thankless overworked hours they put in every week along with the tender loving care provided to give the cats their 2nd or 3rd chance for a loving home.
From the first time Ashly Jane had a band back her up on an original song of hers, she remembers thinking, “holy crap, this is it!” Singing with talented musicians has been a true special moment. After many shows, Ashly Jane was asked to perform at the “Livingston Town Proper” outside Bozeman, MT. The concert is to benefit firefighters that battled the 2012 Pine Creek Fire in Livingston, MT. During the concert, having the opportunity to play with the Zac Brown Band and John Mayer became the most memorable moment to date.
All musicians, at least I would think, have someone they would love to get advice from. Ashly Jane would have loved to talk with Loretta Lynn and ask her how she made her marriage work. She would also like to know how Loretta persevered through getting discovered when she was a mom and had very limited time or recognition. If Ashly could give a new and up-coming artist advice, she would tell them to “stay true to your genre and art, don’t try to be someone else, as it will be obvious”. After being in the music scene for a few years, Ashly Jane would also advise artists to make sure they have a contract for all private events – it can protect both sides.
Rapid fire questions –
What is your favorite Holiday? Halloween, you get to dress up as someone you’re not in everyday life and it is encouraged.
What is your favorite saying/quote? “Black care rarely sits behind a rider whose pace is fast enough” Theodore Roosevelt
What is your dream destination? Anywhere outside away from large groups of people.
What state has been your favorite to do a concert/event in? Montana, of course
What is your favorite type of car? After many years of broken-down vehicles, my favorite car is the one that is reliable.
Do you have a hobby outside of music? Making rag rugs
What is your favorite kind of Ice Cream? Neapolitan
What is your favorite junk food? Onion Rings
Do you have any pet(s)? A cat named Baby Girl
What is your favorite book that you read or author that you like to read? “The Body Keeps Score” by Bessel A. van der Kolk is a book about trauma informed care. (grad school)
Who is your favorite Actor/Actress? Matthew McConaughey
What is your favorite movie line? “I’m your Huckleberry” from Tombstone
On September 16, 2023, Little Jane and the Pistol Whips released their third full-length album as an Independent Artist under the title “Long Road Ahead”. She is extremely proud of the album “Long Road Ahead”, it is one of the biggest things that has happened over the last 10 years. She hopes that all her fans are enjoying the album. ‘Long Road Ahead’ is the title cut of the album and is also Ashly Jane’s favorite song on the album. It is that song she goes to when she is struggling or having a bad day and in no time, her day and mood are better.
Album: Long Road Ahead
Writers: Ashly Jane Holland, aka “Little Jane”
The members of the Pistol Whips are Russ Smith from Boston, MA, Quinton King from Maryland, and Ethan Decker from Bozeman, MT. The first album released by the band was back in 2010 and the latest album, ‘Long Road Ahead’ were both released to the public by performing at a local Eagles Lodge in Bozeman, MT where good memories of Ashly Jane’s younger years resurfaced each time.
Check out her website to support her bands’ music by purchasing hats, t-shirts, vintage pearl-snap shirts with a patch, music or to keep up to date on her happenings – www.littlejaneandthepistolwhips.com