Castro Valley, CA-raised and St. Louis-chosen, Jay-Marie is Holy is an up-and-coming artist to watch. Known for a decades-long commitment to protest, politics, and possibilities, Jay-Marie Is Holy’s vocal, bass, and saxophone-oriented offerings invite audiences into gender and genre-defying portals. Their signature soulful and meditative sound is built atop sonic inspirations like homemade Christian hymns, 90’s r&b & pop gospel, timeless disco/house music, and early 00’s neo-soul. Black, brilliant, trans, and feeling, Jay-Marie’s uniquely and queerly-textured vocals sit in the spirit with an unabashed vulnerability and bold tenderness rare in this generation of artists. J Holy offers deeply relatable and original lyrical content, instrument-first songwriting, and a commitment to finding the communal Holy in the most dire of oppressive contexts. Jay-Marie uses the tools of music, mind, body, and spirit to birth new futures in the name of Black Transcendence, their coined term for a better world built on unapologetic care for sex workers, Black women + trans folks, & their fellow griots yet to come.
Jay-Marie is a co-founder of several musical group experiments such as SF’s Bones of A Feather, AudioXO with producer Wazi Maret, and 2015-17’s Rev. Sekou & the Holy Ghost which logged 75 shows and three nationwide tours in under a year. Their arranging, songwriting, and co-executive production on the 2016 RS&HG album The Revolution Has Come (Farfetched, Eloveate) topped off an explosive and spiritual project as the duo met, wrote, and recorded the 9-track LP all in less than six months. TRHC was sparked by Jay-Marie’s first-ever original composition, “Past Time (A Letter to Lamia Beard),” a song penned as a cry for witness and forward action in honor of slain Black trans women and gender-expansive people. Jay-Marie followed their time as a bandmate with the 2018 release of their timeless single “Here, Queer, and Staying,” and has been balancing Missouri-based, nationwide advocacy, with creating and collaborating with other artists and producers ever since.
Jay-Marie is Holy’s music is offered in prayerful hope that those who listen may feel more deeply and rise ever-higher toward a more just and beautiful horizon. Future artistic visions include an original music and a poetry-graced studio album, as well as a house music LP that expands on audience favorite, “I Wanna Love.” Jay-Marie’s hit single of 2021, “I Wanna Love”—complete with choreography by MJ Imani and a music video shot by up-and-coming St. Louis image maker Nyara Williams—was co-produced by long-time Honey Dijon collaborator Tim Kvasnosky out of Los Ángeles, CA and engineered by Mike Thompson (Luna Studios, Transgender District SF) Owen Ragland (Whitworth) of St. Louis, MO.
Jay-Marie is Holy releases the new debut album “Love Is No Fool”. Accompanied by a full band, this 43-minute aural journey shines end to end. Singles ‘Stellar’, ‘Can’t Stop, Won’t Stop / I Wanna Love’, and ‘Ride for It’ take listeners on a complete journey, offering both the respite of sound and lyrics that reground. With every line, Holy reminds us all that the world we are here to co-create must be one rooted in our connections to pleasure and honesty about who & what we love.